Sale of Expired Goods: Remains a Persistent Issue

July 11, 2022

Continuous market surveillance by the Consumer Council of Fiji (CCoF) over the past week has revealed an influx in cases of sale of expired goods to consumers. Businesses took advantage of the shopping hype for Eid celebrations by placing expired and near-expiry products on specials and displaying it prominently to lure consumers.

“Unconscionable conduct by businesses tend to increase during times of festivities and religious events. This is quite concerning as it implies that businesses are knowingly flouting the law during the anticipated increased spending in order to get rid of near expiry, expired and other shoddy products at the consumers expense,” said CCoF Chief Executive Officer Ms Shandil.

Due to the potential health risks associated with the consumption of expired products, the Council has flagged the cases to the Ministry of Health and Medical Services and the Municipal Councils.

“As the actions required against the sale of expired products falls under the jurisdiction of Ministry of Health and Medical Services and the Municipal Councils, we are calling on these enforcement bodies to promptly investigate and dish out relevant penalties to serve as a deterrence against these dubious practices. Warnings are no longer effective at keeping such issues at bay,” added Shandil.

With more shopping hype expected for Mother’s Day this week, the Council will continue to identify and address such market practices. However, consumers are reminded to be vigilant and exercise extreme caution when out shopping.

“Be alert whenever you pick an item to place in your shopping cart. Check the product packaging, expiry date and the shelf price. After making the purchase, go through your receipts to ensure that the point-of-sale prices reflects what was advertised and the shelf price,” added Ms Shandil.

Consumers coming across similar issues are encouraged to contact the Council on toll-free number 155 or lodge a complaint using the Consumer Council of Fiji mobile app.