Saturday, 11th July 2020

This Month's Magazine


There are two sides to copying a product or shall we say faking a product.

The first and most obvious is happening right here in Europe with the supermarkets that copy products marking them with their own brand. The idea being that the product can be offered cheaper than the well known more expensive branded counterpart.

The core of the matter is that the products they offer under their own brand clearly has to reflect their local good reputation with clients and of course, right under the health & safety department nose, they have to be sure that such products meet with the required standards.

The most daring high street supermarket would seem to be ALDI who ruthlessly copy top brands with good quality that is often even better than the original. Most of their products are usually made in the same country of their stores and made by the same suppliers of the branded products. Good House Keeping voted that Aldi’s Christmas Pudding was better than that of Harrods and Heston’s in a blind taste test.

That is one secret of their success behind the cheaper prices and popularity with shoppers, the other is that they will only stock products which they know will sell, reducing the choice of products on sale but getting better prices from suppliers for the larger quantities they can order. But the main reason for its success is the way in which it markets its ‘own brand’ products riding on the back of all the established brands that spent years and millions to build.

All of this is done above board and while the products are as good or better and cheaper who is to complain?

Then there is the other side, the nasty side. Fake products have plagued mankind for centuries; next to prostitution, historians consider counterfeiting the world’s second oldest profession. But it is criminal when such fakes and counterfeit are created with the intention of deceiving consumers, not just with an inferior quality product but often one that endangers the life of the user. Clearly the motive here is to line the pocket of the supplier at the expense of the consumer even if it does endanger the consumers’ well being.


The number of cases exposed, unfortunately many when it’s too late, seems to be growing daily:

  • Some 90 per cent of counterfeit drugs are thought to be made in China
  • Fake Viagra tablets that are linked to stroke, liver failure and even death
  • A source at a Las Vegas hospital said Viagra from China also contained cocaine and opiates.
  • Fraudulent items come into the US on container ships from China
  • Authentication expert Fei Deyle immediately recognized a fake Herve Leger dress sold to show anchor Andrea Isom on eBay
  • Some 336 cases of counterfeit seeds, pesticides and fertilizers have been uncovered in the past six months in China
  • Fake fertilizers can destroy the soil, the food and your body.
  • Wheat gluten adulterated with melamine finds its way from China into “all natural” pet food in the United States, killing thousands of cats and dogs
  • Fake car wheels that break the moment they hit a small pothole at slow speeds endangering the lives of drivers and pedestrians The list is endless.
  • Even fake rice! Is there anythig real in China?

This is why I fail to understand this recent familiarity with China, the number one country that produces more than 40% of the global fakes & counterfeits of the
world. They can’t even copy properly! Surely the best solution ought to be to ban all imports from that country and include the other major culprits like Taiwan and Singapore.

Of course many a top brand use the cheaper manufacturing costs in these countries but there should be some legislation requiring such products to be inspected before shipment by specially appointed, above corruption, inspectors from each importing country.

While these threats to our health persist, is up to us the consumers to avoid buying any produces made in China and the like countries. Be especially careful when buying product online.

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