Defamatory products confiscated

Photo credit to The Borneo Post.

KUCHING: Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism officers yesterday confiscated all floor cleaners with defamatory stickers ‘Buy oil palm free products to save orang utans’ on their labels from a supermarket chain here.

A team of three led by enforcement officer Mohd Fikri Lai Abdullah removed the product from the supermarket following clear evidence of defamatory products being displayed and sold at its shelves.

Two days ago, at a press conference, Sarawak Land Development Minister Tan Sri James Masing expressed deep disappointment over insidious tactics engaged by some foreign forces in attacking the nation’s oil palm industry's reputation in what was believed to be more of trade rivalry rather than genuine concern for environment and wildlife protection. 

“I do not expect supermarkets in Malaysia to be in cahoots with this kind of thing. I hope this supermarket chain operator will be more responsible. It is not wise to sell out the country’s interest for a quick profit,” Masing said. 

The supermarket chain operator did not immediately withdraw the products from the shelves. It only responded after the Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism enforcement officers stepped in. 

The Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism regulates issuance and revocation of hypermarket and supermarket licences. 

The supermarket chain operator was reminded that all products that spread lies about palm oil are to be removed immediately from the shelves and not to be displayed for sale. It was, once again, given a chance to comply with best practices.

“This product has just entered Sarawak, a week ago. This is one of the outlets among many spread across Sabah, Sarawak, Pulau Pinang, Johor, Kuala Lumpur and Selangor that is selling this product,” said Fikri.

According to a statement issued by the Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism, for now, no legal action would be taken against the supermarket operator concerned.