Not for law enforcement use

Notice anything interesting about the box of ammo on the top?

The ammo is showing up in Wal-Mart at prices equal to what I can reload it for (buying all new brass and my time is worth nothing).

At first I thought it was something along the lines of STI, Barrett, and Modern Ballistics regarding certain government entities. But that wouldn’t explain the restriction on ported barrels.

I’ve sent a query to Federal. If they get back to me I’ll post the response.

Update: I received the following response from Federal this morning:

From: Prodserv
Sent: Thursday, August 19, 2010 8:10 AM
To: Joe Huffman
Subject: RE: Federal Premium – Ask the Expert Form

The bullets are “low cost” and thin-plated, the rifling can and will cut
the jacket material from the lead core of the bullet, those pieces of
jacket can escape from the ports in the barrel.  When launched from the
barrel it is unknown where the jacket material will go and at the
shooter is one possible place. 

The Warning is the same (close) to that on the centerfire pistol caliber
shot shells as the pellets will act much like the copper fragments.

Thank you

—–Original Message—–
From: Joe Huffman
Sent: Wednesday, August 18, 2010 10:45 PM
To: Prodserv
Subject: Federal Premium – Ask the Expert Form

Joe Huffman
P.O. Box 3745
Moscow ID 83843

Can you explain why there is the notice on some boxes of ammunition:


Not for Law Enforcement Use”

An example is here:



13 thoughts on “Not for law enforcement use

  1. An extension of the “Keep out of reach of children” warning?

    Bet it’s due to lowered quality control. Concerns about unburned powder moving in a direction other than downrange?

    Nice to see “only ones” going the other way for once.

  2. It’s an overrun. They mark ammo like that when it was produced for a LEO or Fed contract, and then the ammo was surplused or overproduced for the contract. Since it was made for a government contract but not accepted as part of the contract, the government can’t come back and buy it at the “new” rate. It’s some sort of anti-kickback law.

  3. What Phelps said.

    CCI speer does it too. I used to buy bulk Gold Dots in 500ct boxes marked the same way.

    They also mark “slight blemish and discoloration” lots the same way.

  4. I had done a few web searches and came up with the government contract angle but that doesn’t explain the not for use in ported barrels notice.

    I think there has to be some minor defect that relates to ported barrels.

  5. Definitely an overrun lot. I’ve got some Speer .357SIG marked like that. I have no clue though on the ported barrel restriction. Never seen anything like that before.

  6. Best price I’ve seen at Wally-World down here is still $12.50+tax for a box of 50 9mm. I can buy local commercial reloads for about $10.00/box; considerably less if I supply the brass.

  7. @WallPhone: I’d think that if the label were put there because of quality control issues, it would be better to put a “not for self-defense use” label on it. It would be negligent otherwise!

    Furthermore, if it were a quality control issue, such a self-defense label would further make sense: LEOs could then still use the ammo for practice. Saying “not for law enforcement use” seems to imply that LEOs shouldn’t even use the ammo for practice!

  8. I wonder what would happen if every gun and ammo manufacturer decided not to supply guns or ammo to government entities in the states that have strict anti gun policies and marked their items as such so they couldn’t buy it from WalMart or somewhere indirectly.

    Just thinking out loud.

  9. I think it is a mistake to assume that the two disclaimers are related. There could be a technical reason for the barrel restriction (maybe the bullets have a danger of breaking up?) and the legal restriction on Leo sales.

  10. I’m most interested the wording used in the reply email. He specifically said “plated” and not jacketed, which would imply they’re using a copper plated bullet similar to the Rainier bullets and not a true FMJ round. I don’t particularly have a problem with that if it keeps costs down, and they do have the appropriate warning to not use in comped guns.

    Joe, are those boxes marked “Champion” on the front?

  11. That’s what I thought – according to unconfirmed sources, the Fed Champion does use plated, and not true “jacketed” bullets. But it’s cheap and shoots really well.

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