Counterfeit products are goods which are fraudulent. That may be because they are not genuine, or they may not meet minimum standards expected for the product. Examples would be "honey" which contains no actual honey, only sugar and flavoring; famous label clothing and accessories which are not made by the owner of the label; or airplane or automobile parts that look like genuine parts but are made with inferior materials and cannot withstand the stress required.
Counterfeit products may be made, distributed, and sold by organized crime organizations, including those which present significant dangers. They may even include terrorist organizations.
In the case of branded products with a price premium, and little actual difference in content, substitution of a cheap product for an expensive branded product may occur. Expensive branded liquor or wine is one target.
Notes and references
- "Counterfeit Food More Widespread Than Suspected" article by Stephen Castle and Doreen Carvajal in The New York Times June 26, 2013
- "NJ: Restaurant served coloring and rubbing alcohol instead of scotch" article by David P. Willis in Asbury Park Press May 13, 2013
- "COUNTERFEIT PRODUCTS Why buying fakes can be bad for your health (and more)" 2 page Europol pdf file.
- Combatting Food Fraud Conference An industry conference held in May 21, 2013 in the UK which included presentations by: Inscatech, British Frozen Food Federation (BFFF), Department of Environment Farming & Rural Affairs (DEFRA), Marine Stewardship Council, Halal Authority Board, Trading Standard Institute, Food & Environment Research Agency (FERA), Global ID, and Foodchain Europe