Fast Track Court fines Yahya Investment K70,000 for repackaging expired products

  • It was discovered that expired products were repackaged into their own brands and labeled to extend or validate their shelf life.
  • The court also fined the trader K40,000 for violation of the Food Security Act.
  • It further ordered that the fines should be paid on or before 28th May, 2024.

 

Lusaka Fast Track Court has fined Yahya Investment Limited K70,000 for stocking and selling relabeled and repackaged expired goods, and 4% of its annual turnover.

Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) Senior Public Relations Officer, Mubiana Nalwendo revealed that the court also fined the trader K40,000 for violation of the Food Security Act.

Mr. Nalwendo disclosed that the court further ordered that the fines should be paid on or before 28th May, 2024, while the 4% of the firm’s annual turnover should be paid within 60 days of the judgment, while all the goods and products pertaining to the case be destroyed in their entirety.

He said the Commission received reports from members of the public  that Yahya Investment Limited, trading as Grocery Cart in Lusaka’s Emmasdale area was importing fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) that were either expired or almost ending their shelf life and were being repackaged.

Mr. Mubiana during an inspection, it was discovered that expired products such as spices, rice, and other foodstuffs were repackaged into their own brands and labeled to extend or validate their shelf life.

“The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission in collaboration with the Lusaka City Council (LCC), the Zambia Meteorology Agency (ZMA), and the state Police undertook an on spot inspection of Yahya Investment Limited trading as Grocery Cart for compliance.”

“The inspection team discovered that Yahya Investment Limited was in breach of the Competition and Consumer Protection Act No. 24 of 2010 as amended (“the Act”), and the Food Safety Act No. 7 of 2019 (“the FS Act”) by stocking and selling to unsuspecting members of the public relabeled and repackaged expired goods,” Mr. Nalwendo explained.

He revealed that about 80 percent of the products found on site were food stuffs and about 90% were expired, adding that the trader engaged in acts of rubbing off product expiry dates with thinners reagent and relabeling them using their own product labeling device to extend the shelf life.

“The Commission and the Council pursued the matter against Yahya Investment Limited through the Lusaka City Council Fast Track Court for violating the Act and the FS Act. The accused was charged with two counts, the 2 first one being the violation of section 52(1)(a) and 52(1)(b) of the Act and the second one being the violation of Section 10 as read with Section 62 of the FS Act.”

“The Accused pleaded guilty to both counts and was fined K70,000.00 in accordance with Section 52(2)(a) and 4% of Yahya Investments Ltd annual turnover in accordance with Section 52(2)(b) of the Act,” he added.

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