A Way to Combat Food Fraud, an Old Enemy that Costs Billions
The circulation of fake rice made the headline and shocked the public a few years ago. It was called fake rice as it contained harmful synthetic substances that put the health of consumers at risk. In addition to the fake rice case, there were also cases of counterfeit spirit which took dozens of lives. The truth is food fraud has been around for centuries.
What is food fraud?
According to Professor Gary C. Smith, Ph.D. from Texas A & M University as quoted from the Food Safety Net Service,food fraud is the act of purposely altering, misrepresenting, mislabeling, substituting or tampering with any food product at any point along the farm–to–table food supply–chain. Fraud can occur in raw materials, ingredients, the final product, or in the food’s packaging. Gaining maximum profits has been the motivation of the perpetrators.
Food fraud has actually reached a global scale. For instance, as in Australia, there is a case where producers imported olive oil from Greece and labeled them as Australian olive oil. There was also a case of fake honey that flooded a number of European countries. Many honey products that were claimed to be genuine actually contained added sugar or artificial sweeteners.
According to the World Customs Organization, food fraud is causing global losses of US$ 49 billion every year. Not only does it cause businesses to lose money, tarnish brand and reputation as well as losing consumer trust, food fraud also causes serious health problems, and some are even life-threatening for consumers. The breakthrough in technology makes counterfeit products even more accessible and quickly circulates.
The weapon to combat food fraud
The implementation of a comprehensive brand protection program is a weapon that becomes an integral part of a business in combating food fraud. Brand protection program not only protects a company’s brand and business reputation but also protects and saves consumers. In Indonesia, brand protection program has been implemented for years by prominent brands of alcoholic beverages, and it has been proven to mitigate the circulation of counterfeit spirits.
With its extensive experience, Integrity Indonesia has been trusted by clients in providing professional brand protection program services consisting of product integrity threat detection, trademark investigations, product integrity threat investigations, and enforcement. For more information about brand protection programs and other risk mitigation services, do not hesitate to contact Integrity via email@example.com and let us be your partner in protecting your brand and your consumers.