Luv-a-Duck in ACCC gun-sight
Poultry manufacturer Luv-a-Duck Pty Ltd is being taken to the Federal Court of Australia by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). The ACCC says the company’s claims that its ducks are ‘range reared and grain fed’ are false, misleading and deceptive.
Luv-a-Duck claims on its packaging, website and brochures that its birds are ‘grown and grain fed in the spacious Victorian Wimmera Wheatlands’. But the ACCC alleges this is not true and that the ducks do not “have substantial access to the outdoors, or to spacious outdoor conditions”.
“Consumers must be able to trust that what is on the label is true and accurate,” said ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court. “Businesses need to make sure they are not misleading consumers into paying a premium for products that don’t match the claims on the label,” she said.
Luv-a-Duck will face charges of false, misleading and deceptive conduct in the Federal Court. The ACCC is seeking orders that Luv-a-Duck implement a trade practices compliance program and that the company publish corrective notices on its website and business premises, and that it provide corrective notice to its customers.
In January 2012, Australian Food News reported that the Federal Court fined another poultry producer, Turi Foods, AU$100,000 for making misleading claims of a similar nature about their products. Turi Foods, which supplies La Ionica brand meat chickens, claimed that its birds were “free to roam” when in fact each chicken had only a space equivalent to an A4 sheet of paper.