The Customs and Excise Department (C&ED) seized 187 catties of suspected fake dried deer tendons worth about $41,200 in a series of raids on 28 dried food retailers last week.
Customs investigations in the previous months revealed that some unscrupulous retailers were selling suspected fake deer tendons to deceive consumers. Samples of the suspected dried deer tendons were given to an accredited laboratory for DNA tests and examined by experts of the dried food trade. Results confirmed that the samples were cattle tendons.
To protect consumer rights, the Department took enforcement action last week and searched 28 dried food shops in To Kwa Wan, Mong Kok, Sham Shui Po, Tuen Mun, Shatin, Tsuen Wan, Tai Po, Yuen Long, Tin Shui Wai, Shau Kei Wan and North Point. Some 187 catties of suspected fake dried deer tendons were seized. During the operation, two women and a man, aged from 40 to 53, were arrested. They were released on bail pending further investigation.
The Head of Consumer Protection Bureau (2), Mr Lam Po-chuen, said today (September 12) that the price of genuine dried deer tendons was much higher than that of dried cattle tendons. In order to make profits, some unscrupulous traders were trying to deceive customers by selling fake dried deer tendons, he added.
Under the Trade Descriptions Ordinance, any person who supplies goods with a false trade description in the course of trade or business or has in his possession for sale any goods with a false trade description is a criminal offence. The maximum penalty upon conviction is a fine of $500,000 and imprisonment for five years.
Mr Lam appealed to traders to abide by the law and reminded consumers to buy dried food from reputable shops.
He also urged members of the public to report any suspected activities of violating the Trade Descriptions Ordinance by calling the Customs 24-hour hotline 2545 6182.
Ends/Monday, September 12, 2011