There are plenty of reasons why you’d want to know where your beloved Le Creuset is made. Perhaps you’re concerned about product safety regulations. Or maybe you want to know if it’s still crafted in France. After all, Le Creuset is a costly investment, and you want to make sure your new purchase will last as long as the Dutch oven that your mom cooked with for 35 years. Do they still make Le Creuset like they used to?
Where is Le Creuset Made?
The good news is that, yes, Le Creuset’s signature ovens are still made in France. Le Creuset enamel cast iron cookware is forged and finished only at the Fresnoy-le-Grand foundry in northern France, where it’s been manufactured since 1925.
However, other products with the Le Creuset label are made in different parts of the world. Le Creuset’s silicone, nonstick metal bakeware, and nonstick pro cookware are made in China. Its enamel-on-steel comes from Thailand, and Le Creuset stoneware may be manufactured in either China or Thailand. Finally, Le Creuset’s stainless steel cookware originates in Portugal.
If you’re ever in doubt, each product’s country of origin is listed on Le Creuset’s website under the “specifications” heading.
How Do You Know If Your Le Creuset Is Made in France?
Each authentic Le Creuset piece will have “Made in France” stamped on the bottom of the pot. The underside of the lid should also be stamped “France” along with a two-digit size marking. The knob of the lid will also have the brand name stamped on it.
It is important to buy Le Creuset from an outlet store or a reputable dealer to avoid being sold an inferior fake product. Some websites use the Le Creuset logo to sell counterfeit products.
Purchase directly from Le Creuset or an authorized dealer. If you are unsure if a website is selling authentic products, you can contact Le Creuset directly to verify its legitimacy as a retailer. Le Creuset does have an authentic presence on Amazon, but products sold by third-party sellers on Amazon are poorly regulated and often fake.
How Can I Tell If My Le Creuset Is Real?
1. Makers Mark
Make sure your Le Creuset product has the brand name stamp, the size stamp on the underside of the lid, and is marked “France” on both the base and the lid. Many Le Creuset products have the mark “ELF” stamped on the underside of the lid, but this isn’t universal.
2. Enameled Rims
The rim of Le Creuset cast iron should be covered in a primer glaze. It won’t be the same color as the enamel on the exterior of the pot, but it shouldn’t be raw iron, either. The raw cast iron should never be exposed anywhere on the piece. This full covering keeps the cast iron sealed so it won’t rust, even without seasoning.
3. Rim Thickness
The cast iron should be a uniform thickness all the way around. If your “Le Creuset” product is poorly shaped or has rims of bumpy or varying thicknesses, it may be a fake. Le Creuset has such strict quality control that they reject 30% of products in the manufacturing process.
Rims on an authentic Le Creuset Dutch oven should be 4mm thick or less. They will be noticeably thinner than rims on other brands of enameled dutch ovens.
Check the knobs and the markings on the knobs against the currently featured products on Le Creuset’s website. LC has been changing the knobs on its signature ovens in recent years.
Le Creuset enameled cast iron should have rich, vibrant colors. The company offers lots of colors and patterns, including some limited runs. Other colors are retired.
Check the Le Creuset website to see which colors are currently offered and make sure the one you’re considering is on the list. Focus also on the quality of the color. If it looks dull or uneven, that’s a sign it may not be legitimate Le Creuset. You can also look up the product serial number on the box and see if it’s the correct number for that color and model, according to the LC website.
6. Price and Gut Check
Remember, if the price looks too good to be true, it may be a scam. Le Creuset is a pricey brand, so if you find it for such a low price that you’re rushing for your credit card, beware. Le Creuset doesn’t run deep year-end discounts like its primary French-made competitor, Staub.
Frequently Asked Questions
When Did Le Creuset Stop Manufacturing In France?
Le Creuset started manufacturing their enameled cast iron cookware in France in 1925. These products are still made in the same foundry today! They have never stopped manufacturing in France.
However, Le Creuset does sell items made in other countries. Le Creuset’s silicone products, nonstick cookware, and stoneware are manufactured in China or Thailand. Le Creuset’s stainless steel cookware is made in Portugal.
Is Le Creuset Made In China High Quality?
Le Creuset prides itself on offering high-quality products to consumers. Their cookware comes with a lifetime limited warranty, and that includes items made in China. The toughened nonstick PRO line boasts a 90-day “love it or your money back” promise. These warranties, combined with excellent reviews from other consumers, are reassuring that no matter the country of origin, Le Creuset demands quality.
Is Le Creuset Made In China Safe?
Le Creuset’s signature cast iron products are not made in China. Its nonstick products made in China are likely to comply with safety regulations, but they may not have the same level of quality control as products made in the EU. Products imported to the US should comply with FDA standards and California’s Prop 65.
Today products are held to more rigorous testing standards than ever. California’s Prop 65 has lowered leachable limits for lead and cadmium across the country. Before 1970, toxic materials like cadmium or lead may have been used in paints or glazes. If you have older, vintage pieces, you can purchase a lead testing kit online for peace of mind.
Le Creuset is a household name found across the world, known for its bright colors and high quality. Authentic Le Creuset enamel cast iron is made only in France. However, other Le Creuset products may have a different country of origin.
Have any questions about Le Creuset and where it is made? Drop your question in the comments!
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