In the media – National
New country of origin food labelling reforms start today
Consumers will find it easier to know where their food has come from, with new country of origin food labelling reforms starting today. Some exceptions have been made for seasonal items that could be affected by supply issues. But on a whole, companies that ignore the changes, or provide inaccurate information will face penalties from the ACCC (01 July 2016). More...
International consumer protection enforcers issue guidance for online reviews and endorsements stakeholders
The ICPEN has released a set of guidelines for market participants involved in the collection, moderation and publication of online reviews and endorsements. Compliance with these guidelines will build consumer confidence in online reviews, and help review platforms, traders and digital influencers avoid regulatory action (01 July 2016). More...
ACCC issues public warning about conduct of Australian Business Funding Centre Pty Ltd’s “Government grants” website targeting small businesses
The ACCC has issued a Public Warning Notice about the conduct of Australian Business Funding Centre Pty Ltd which operates the website www.australiangovernmentgrants.org. The Public Warning Notice alleges ABFC has made false or misleading representations about the service’s capability and quality, and the role the service has played in assisting small businesses gain government grant funding (27 June 2016). More...
ACCC allege cartel in polycarbonate roofing industry
The ACCC has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against four companies and three individuals for alleged cartel conduct in relation to the supply of polycarbonate roof sheeting (‘polycarb’) to retailers in Australia. The ACCC also alleges that these agreements had the purpose and likely effect of substantially lessening competition (23 June 2016). More...
FSC’s LIF approach dubbed ‘cartel’ behaviour
The Financial Services Council (FSC) engaged in cartel behaviour when creating the Life Insurance Framework (LIF) as it was driven by the big banks and insurance companies, and the industry should have gone to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) with the proposition (23 June 2016). More...
Online Dealz and its director Janet Lucas to pay $120,000 in penalties for selling unsafe baby cots and strollers
The Federal Court has ordered Online Dealz Pty Ltd to pay a penalty of $100,000 for supplying a household cot, portable cot and stroller that did not comply with safety standards, and for making misleading representations in advertisements for the household cot, in proceedings brought by the ACCC (22 June 2016). More...
ACCC takes action against Heinz over nutritional claims on food for 1-3 year olds
The ACCC has commenced proceedings in the Federal Court against H.J. Heinz Company Australia Ltd (Heinz) in relation to its Little Kids Shredz products. The ACCC alleges that Heinz made false and misleading representations, and engaged in conduct liable to mislead the public, in relation to the nature, characteristics and suitability of these products, in contravention of the Australian Consumer Law (21 June 2016). More...
ACCC takes action against e-cigarette suppliers for alleged misleading “no toxic chemicals” claims
The ACCC has commenced separate proceedings in the Federal Court against two e-cigarette online retailers alleging that they made false or misleading representations and engaged in misleading conduct by making statements on their websites that their e-cigarette products did not contain toxic chemicals and did not contain any of the chemicals found in conventional cigarettes (20 June 2016). More...
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v Online Dealz Pty Ltd  FCA 732
CONSUMER LAW – section 106(1) and (2) of the Australian Consumer Law – supplying and offering to supply goods to consumers that do not comply with safety standards
CONSUMER LAW – sections 18, 29(1)(a), 29(1)(g) and 33 of the Australian Consumer Law – misleading or deceptive conduct or conduct likely to mislead or deceive, false or misleading representations, conduct liable to mislead the public – whether reference to certification to Australian and New Zealand Standards conveys compliance with those standards
CONSUMER LAW – contravention of ss 18, 29(1)(a), 29(1)(g), 33, 106(1) and 106(2) of the Australian Consumer Law – knowing involvement in contraventions – pecuniary penalties, declarations, injunctions, publication and disqualification orders sought by applicant – considerations relevant to granting injunctions – considerations relevant to making publication order – considerations relevant to fixing penalties – appropriateness of disqualification – disqualification order not granted.
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