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‘Victoria Honey’ was neither Victorian nor honey: ACCC

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has won penalties of more than $30,000 from Basfoods (Aust) Pty Ltd (Basfoods) for false and misleading representations about honey.

The regulator issued three infringement notices to Basfoods over its “Victoria Honey” product, which was made from corn and cane sugars and originated in Turkey. It alleged that the name, labelling and website of the product were false or misleading. Basfoods admitted that its conduct contravened the Australian Consumer Law, and paid a total of $30,600.

In a statement, the ACCC said it was difficult for consumers to check whether a product was genuine honey, and was aware of concerns about other honey suppliers and products.

Suppliers were also urged to test their product to confirm it.

“Honey suppliers should now be on notice that they must have a basis for selling a product as ‘honey’, which likely should include tests to confirm the product is in fact honey produced entirely by honey bees,” the ACCC said.

Basfoods will also publish a range of corrective notices, and has undertaken to regularly test its products and ensure its products labelled as honey are entirely produced by bees.

This is yet another reminder of the importance of not making misleading or deceiving representations in relation to products or services.