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Abe F. March
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Number of posts : 10620
Registration date : 2008-01-26
Age : 79
Location : Germany

PostSubject: Consumer Protection   Mon May 25, 2015 1:32 am

What is the Consumer Protection Agency doing to protect the consumers?  The Agency called: Bureau of Consumer Protection says: The FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection stops unfair, deceptive and fraudulent business practices by collecting complaints and conducting investigations, suing companies and people that break the law, developing rules to maintain a fair marketplace, and educating consumers and businesses about their rights and responsibilities.”
This appears to be an “after the fact” program.  Protection of the food we eat requires labeling to let the consumer know the source of the product and the ingredients. The caveat "Let the buyer beware" is not a fair practice.  The consumer must trust that the product they buy is as stipulated and that is done by labelling.
The “United” States of America are subject to the rules of a central government.  In Europe, the EU (European Union) was established to have a central governing body (located in Brussels) that sets rules for the free trade between countries (States).  The idea is noble; however it is plagued with problems.  Some countries want more restrictions.  We recently went through a problem with meat where horse meat was used in ground beef.  Germany in particular instituted strict codes with labelling that must include the source of the food and the ingredients.  Just this morning on the news it was reported that the US is shipping meat from cloned animals to Europe.  The consumers are alerted to this and I suspect there will be a boycott of meat from America.  Unfortunately it may expand to other goods.  Trade agreements can cause unwanted or unnecessary food to be used in exchange.  GMO’s are not permitted in Germany.  I don’t know if that restriction applies to other EU countries.  The consumer must have confidence that the food they buy is exactly as stated on the label.  I read that there is a push in America for product labelling and I think it is a needed requirement.  We are being poisoned by food produced using of insecticides.  How can we protect against it?  Labelling is a big step and that must be monitored by the Consumer Protection Agency.  After-the-fact checking may be too late.  Inspection of food sources that includes sanitation as well as labelling is the protection the consumer needs. 
In the States and in Europe one sees “BIO” on products.  That is supposed to mean that the product was produced under biological conditions – without pesticides or any other additives. Unfortunately some promoters fraudulently use that term to justify an increase in price.   With wine, the growers of grapes use the term “ECO” as ecologically produced. In the wine producing region where I live, “ECO-VIN” stands for wine produced in ecologically controlled vineyards.  No harmful sprays are used on the vines/grapes.  Those who promote this are inspected regularly to insure they comply with the requirements for the use of that label.  If you walk through the vineyards, you will notice grapes with a white film on them indicating that the spray used was some chemical.  Grapes sprayed with non-chemical substances do not have that film on them and can safely be eaten off the vine.   
The Consumer Protection Agency must do its job and that job should be pro-active.  Labelling is something the consumer’s should demand.  Violations must be aggressively prosecuted.
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