Counterfeit Products

12/04/2016 11:02

The Consumer Council of Fiji urges consumers to be proactive when purchasing branded products as counterfeit products are on the rise.

The spread of counterfeit products has increased globally in recent years, counterfeiting and piracy is also seen in Fiji whether its electronic goods, spare parts, cosmetics, clothes, shoes, bags, movies and music.

The demand for counterfeit products in Fiji is driven by the high prices of genuine products which are beyond the reach of many consumers. Consumers pay for branded expensive modern products but end up getting counterfeit products which they are not aware. Consumers need protection from sub-standard fakes that may be a safety or health risk.

So what are counterfeit products? Counterfeiting – literally means copying or imitating.  Counterfeiting of money has been in existence for a long time. However, in the modern age, counterfeiting is most often associated with the imitation of major brand-name consumer goods.

Consumers can spot counterfeit. Look out for the following:

  • Inspect the packaging carefully: Reputable businesses typically take great care in packaging their products. Beware flimsy packaging, packaging with substandard printing or running colors, or packages that appear to have been opened. In addition, take a moment to actually read the package. Spelling or grammatical errors are common on the packaging for counterfeit goods
  • Look for a safety certification label: Just about any electrical product and many other products could pose some sort of safety risk, and hence should have one or more safety certifications on its label if it's made by a legitimate manufacturer. If the certification mark is present only on the packaging, but not on the product itself, there's a good chance the product is fake.
  • Logo / Markings: Look carefully at the logo and its quality. Counterfeits will usually have different fonts or sizes, different colour. 
  • Perfumes- there are also imitations of branded perfumes and these come with no cellophane wrapping, poor printing and no batch code numbers
  • Items of clothing- fake branded clothing will lack proper neck labels, poor logo or inconsistent color.


Counterfeit products often don't include supplementary materials such a user’s manual or a product registration card.

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