A recent investigation done by the National Consumer Commission has found 84 shops in the Mpumalanga and North-West provinces guilty of unlawfully altering food labels. These include shops from major retail chains such as Shoprite and Spar.
Under the Consumer Protection Act it is illegal to tamper with food labels and anyone found doing so can be fined or face imprisonment. Consumers purchasing foods with tampered labels, such as altered expiry dates, could be putting their health at risk through food poisoning, which could in extreme cases prove fatal.
An article in the Business Day reports on the findings of the commission:
Commission inspectors said they were “shocked” by what they found. This included food labels being tippexed out, labels being torn off, ingredient lists missing and homemade labels being placed on the original label containing a new, false expiry date. Some items had no labelling whatsoever.
To read the full report on BDLive click here
The National Consumer Commission has plans to investigate food label tampering across the country following these findings.
To be informed on your rights as a consumer on all purchases, including food, be sure to have a copy of Consumer Law Unlocked by Elizabeth de Stadler close at hand. To purchase a copy click here
Consumer Law Unlocked by Elizabeth de Stadler