Reacting to last week’s column about the “non” celebration of Consumer Welfare Month, Felipe Diman, a solo parent who says he does the grocery himself, bewails the lack and/or powerlessness of Filipino consumer groups.
He notes: “They must be so weak and ineffective due to the huge lobby money of the big consumer companies dominating the industry… One thing that stands out for me is the nonuniform way of measuring content. It comes in every kind of unit the manufacturing company thinks will best serve its purpose…”
Quantity is measured in ounces, milliliters, gallons, liters.
Diman adds: “I used to think the US had the most powerful consumer laws… until I started looking at the labels on Australian products… Their commercial labels, especially on food items, are most transparent and really aimed at pleasing the most meticulous consumers. The labeling in canned pork and beans will tell you exactly how much of the content is tomato sauce, how much is beans and how many percentage is pork.”
He wonders how the tiangge operates, “if those food sellers ever pass through our BFAD (Bureau of Food and Drug now Food and Drug Administration) inspection.”
That is why I hardly buy anything labeled organic. I have been told, while there are associations of organic farmers, there are no official guidelines yet to help consumers tell if what they are buying is truly organically grown. You will have to rely on the say-so of the seller or have to know him/her personally.
Happy Pets Club
Robinsons Malls has launched Happy Pets Club to allow pet “parents” to go malling with their furry friends. The fast-growing community of pet lovers now has chapters at Robinsons Magnolia, where it started, as well as Robinsons Novaliches and Robinsons Place Las Piñas. The Happy Pets Club has more than 200 members.
Mylene del Rosario, regional operations manager for Robinsons Magnolia and Robinsons Place Las Piñas, says club members can join special events and seminars on responsible pet ownership.
Club members’ pets get IDs that will allow them to accompany their humans in Robinsons Malls.
Follow Robinsons Malls on Facebook; Twitter @RobinsonsMalls and Instagram @RobinsonsMallsOfficial.
‘Rethink your pink’
Meanwhile, Robinsons Supermarket and Human Nature have launched Rethink Your Pink campaign to help consumers choose genuinely safe products.
The campaign helps shoppers identify potentially harmful ingredients that have been linked by some scientific studies to serious health risks.
“One of our earliest campaigns was ‘Read the Label,’ which sprang from our desire to educate people about their unwitting exposure to harmful chemicals… in seemingly ordinary, everyday products,” says Human Nature cofounder and president Anna Meloto-Wilk.
Human Nature is the first and only Filipino manufacturer of personal-care and home-care brand that is a member of the Natural Products Association, the largest and oldest nonprofit organization in the United States dedicated to the promotion of natural manufacturing, environmental safety and protection of consumers’ health.
Robinsons Supermarket, on the other hand, has announced that it is committed to educating and empowering consumers to make healthier choices.
Robinsons Supermarket Corp. general manager Jody Gadia says, with partners like Human Nature, “we will be able to spread the message of wellness better…”
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