More Details on Dairy Products Sales BanBy Jan Hogewoning | Mon, 10/19/2020 - 11:07
Last week, the Ministry of Economy and the Federal Consumer Prosecutor's Office (Profeco) instituted a sales ban on 20 different cheeses manufactured by 19 brands, as well as two yoghurt products. The announcement was the latest and one of the strongest actions taken by the government to fight the epidemic of obesity, diabetes and hypertension that afflicts the country.
The government pointed to a double cheat in which many dairy brands were incurring, El Economista writes. On the one hand, the information on the packaging of these products did not follow the new labeling requirements that came into effect on Oct. 1. On the other hand, the information that is mentioned did not truthfully reflect what was in the product. For example, some brands written on their packaging that the products had 100 percent dairy, when in fact, extra vegetable-based fats were added to the product.
Some of the affected brands and their parent companies were quick to respond in their defense. One Grupo Lala product was banned because it did not have the country of origin on its packaging. After some adjustments, the group announced that by Oct. 16, following Profeco’s approval, sales of the product had resumed. Mondelez, the group that makes the widely consumed staple Philadelphia cream cheese, initially stated that the ban was unfounded. However, it also clarified that it was not its cream cheese that had been affected but its American cheese. Profeco has stated that it is still in the process of working with the affected companies to ensure that their products can return to the shelves with the required modifications on packaging information.
According to El Economista, the National Chamber of the Dairy Industry (CANILAC) issued a statement saying it is committed to meeting the standards of the new norm without exceptions. Meanwhile, the National Front for Milk Producers and Consumers celebrated the ban, after having fought against what it alleges is fraud in the industry for 25 years. While the ban is a strong sign that this government is willing to go far to push its campaign against obesity, authorities have also admitted that it will be hard to enforce the ban in every self-service store around the country.