Poland: The Office of Competition and Consumers’ Protection decides on misleading labelling

08 August 2011

Krzysztof Korwin-Kossakowski, Emilia Stępień

Agros Nova, one of the biggest Polish producers of fruit preserves and ready made food, was punished for misleading labelling of its ready made food sold under the brand Łowicz.

In the beginning of 2011, the Office of Competition and Consumers’ Protection (“UOKiK”) commenced an inspection into the labelling of Łowicz products. It revealed that for several years certain products have been sold in packages claiming that the products are enlarged by 15%, while the price stayed the same.

UOKIK found that Łowicz has marketed these products in the smaller packaging years ago, and since then they have been constantly sold in “enlarged packaging”.  This was found to be misleading for the consumers.

UOKiK stated that the majority of consumers are attracted to the product by its price. Therefore, the label informing about the additional quantity for the same price could misinform the consumer.  They might be under the impression that they bought a bigger package for less, while the reality is that they bought a regular package.

Agros Nova cooperated with UOKIK and declared its willingness to change its marketing policy immediately. This resulted in mitigating the consequences. Instead of imposing a fine, UOKiK obliged Agros Nova to withdraw the products with the label in question from the market and cease from using it in future.