“The conflict in the Middle East has resulted in some of our customers and certain retail members including Shoprite, Massmart, SPAR, Woolworths and Pick n Pay being approached, sometimes in an aggressive and confrontational way, to remove products sourced from Israeli manufacturers from their shelves. This infringes on their rights to free and fair trade as enshrined in the country’s constitution. South Africa is a fully constituted democracy that respects law and order. There are channels provided by our respective members for complaints and grievances to be lodged if a consumer is dissatisfied with a particular product. This is also contained in the Consumer Protection Act.
“Our position, as an industry, is that we recognise the right of consumers to exercise freedom of choice with regard to the products that they purchase. In line with this we believe that the industry’s role is to ensure that the products sold in our member’s stores, are marked with legislated descriptive information that includes the country of origin. This enables consumers to make informed buying decisions that are aligned to the personal perspectives that they might hold.”
Senior Consultant – Private Sector