6) The mattress tag may not tell you everything.
Bedding products are not supposed to contain chemicals that are banned in the U.S., such as formaldehyde and certain PBDEs. However, manufacturers are not required to disclose the chemical components of their mattresses on tags, but rather the generic name of the raw materials and fibers. Chemicals used to meet the stringent laws regarding flammability, fungicides, and other products also do not have to be listed on the tag. Additionally, the tags are prepared by the manufacturer, so there is a possibility of mistakes or fraud (though if caught they face stiff penalties).
7) Laws limit what manufacturers can put on the tags.
International regulations, U.S. regulations, and some state laws have been enacted to protect consumers that have an impact on what is included on the manufacturer’s label. Under these laws, manufacturers must use the generic names for all materials, rather than their branded names and cannot put their logos or change the designs of law tags. Some states also require additional information like size, weight, vendor information and other manufacturing details.
8) The country of origin must be on the tag.
Country codes are designated with two letters, such as China which has recently changed from the old RC (Republic of China) to the new CN code. California is listed as CA, while Canada has changed to CD to avoid confusion. These codes conform to ISO standards, which can be found here. USA-made mattresses that import materials or components must also specify either “Made in the US of imported materials”, or “Made in China, finished in USA”, for example.
9) The flammability notice is often on the law tag.
The California flammability notice will often be on the same tag, either to the left, beneath, or on the reverse. This is the notice which states a product complies with California TB 116 and TB 117/16 CFR Part 1633 laws, and also warn consumers to exercise care near flame and cigarettes.
10) Mattress tags serve a purpose for businesses as well.
Companies also benefit from the use of the information found on these tags. They are often able to track the factory and batch where the individual mattresses were manufactured. This helps them identify quality control problems with warranty claims and returns, and may assist with recalls, benefiting customers as well. The tag information also allows manufacturers to ensure warranty claims cannot be refiled for the same bed (after its sold or donated).
So, ultimately, when it comes to mattress tags, consumers may remove them without breaking the law. However, there are several benefits of leaving the tags on, and much information that can be gleaned from tags as well. It is always a good idea to cross check the tag information when you accept delivery of a new bed, and you may even find it helpful to take a photo of the mattress tags to ensure the data will be accessible down the road.