Retail

TIME TO SHAPE UP FOR HEALTH & WELLNESS CLAIMS

Even before the arrival of COVID-19 the wellness industry had become an established part of the mainstream, but with the pandemic firmly placing health and wellness at the forefront of consumers’ minds, brands must exercise caution when racing to meet demand. With regulators, including the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and the Therapeutic Goods …

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SPAM OFF THE MENU: ACMA ISSUES LARGEST FINE TO DATE

Recently, the Australian Communication and Media Authority (ACMA) reported that it issued a million dollar infringement notice and received court enforceable undertakings from one of Australia’s major supermarket chains for breaches of the Spam Act 2003 (Cth) (Spam Act).  This and a similar enforcement action against a large Australian telecommunication company in early 2020 demonstrate …

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WHEN THE SHOE DOESN’T FIT: NAVIGATING REFUNDS & RETURNS

As retailers begin welcoming customers back into bricks and mortar outlets, many will keep in-store change rooms closed to comply with COVID-safe guidelines.  Without the opportunity for customers to try before they buy, there is likely to be an increased rate of returned goods and businesses should be aware of their obligations under the Australian …

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GROUNDHOG DAY ENDS FOR RETAIL: AUSTRALIAN CONSUMER LAW STILL APPLIES

***“I Got You Babe” by Sonny and Cher playing**** Much like Bill Murray stopping his alarm for the final time in Groundhog Day, Australia is about to emerge from strict COVID19 restrictions and gradually resume normal life. For the retail sector, this means consumers are able to return to shops in some states and territories.  …

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AUSTRALIAN BURGER CHAIN BITES OFF MORE THAN IT CAN CHEW: LEARNINGS FOR FOREIGN BRAND OWNERS FROM IN-N-OUT BURGERS, INC V HASHTAG BURGERS PTY LTD & ORS [2020] FCA 193

The Federal Court of Australia (FCA) recently handed down its decision in the case that all Australian burger lovers have been eagerly watching – infringement proceedings brought by US burger chain, In-N-Out Inc. (INO), against Sydney based burger chain, Hashtag Burger Pty Ltd, trading as D#wn-N-Out (DNO). Having regard to overwhelming evidence, the court found …

AUSTRALIAN BURGER CHAIN BITES OFF MORE THAN IT CAN CHEW: LEARNINGS FOR FOREIGN BRAND OWNERS FROM IN-N-OUT BURGERS, INC V HASHTAG BURGERS PTY LTD & ORS [2020] FCA 193 Read More »

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: 2020 ACCC COMPLIANCE AND ENFORCEMENT PRIORITIES ANNOUNCED

Earlier this week, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) announced its annual compliance and enforcement priorities for 2020. This list consists of a number of areas that are targeted at retail and particularly food businesses in Australia and include: misleading and deceptive conduct in relation to the sale and promotion of food products; franchisor …

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These Schemes Ain’t Loyal says ACCC Draft Report on Customer Loyalty Schemes

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) recently released its draft report on customer loyalty schemes, which has raised concerns about the actual benefit to consumers of such schemes and the use (or rather misuse) of consumers’ data. Preliminary Findings and Concerns At a high level, the ACCC’s main concerns (as set out in the …

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Subscribed, Sealed, Delivered – Embracing the Subscription Box Retail Model

The Australian retail sector is experiencing significant structural change – and this leaves businesses with no choice other than to start thinking outside the box…or rather think about the box itself… Enter the subscription box. By paying a regular fee, subscribers can receive a recurring delivery of products, often picked for the customer by the …

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No More Sugar Coating: Government Orders Review of Nutrition Labelling for Added Sugars

They say you are what you eat…. But it’s doubtful that most Australians would be comfortable saying that they are the 10 (or more) teaspoons of sugar they consumed in their last can of soft drink.  However, we may well soon be confronted with these images given that labelling that displays this information pictorially is …

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Back to school: Consumer rights training required

The fast-paced retail environment poses a high risk for businesses to make false, misleading or deceptive representations about products and consumer rights under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL).  With the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) having the power to impose considerable pecuniary penalties, businesses should be aware of their obligations under the ACL and …

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Customer data: What you should know

As online channels become an increasingly important part of retail businesses, organisations are increasingly collecting customer data in the course of trade. This information is rich with insights that can be used by organisations to track consumption patterns, effectively target their advertising to particular consumers or particular groups of consumers and directly contact consumers. With significant …

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Returning faulty gifts: New year, new product returns?

There’s always that one present under the tree. It doesn’t quite fit right or maybe doesn’t work once plugged in…Remember to not only remain calm, but both consumers and retailers should also ensure that they are fully aware of their rights and obligations under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL). According to the ACCC website, the …

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A Christmas credit carol: Advertising consumer credit

As we move into the festive season, personal finance such as credit cards and loans become increasingly attractive to consumers so they can spread the Christmas cheer. Offering finance options are a great way to get customers through the door, however, businesses should be aware of requirements that apply to advertising consumer credit under the …

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Marketing warfare series – Part II: Comparative advertising

A strategy often used by competing brands is comparative advertising. With numerous cases brought in the Federal Court of Australia each year and the potential for considerable pecuniary penalties, businesses should approach this strategy with caution. What is comparative marketing? Comparative advertising is, as its name suggests, an advertisement that compares a product or service …

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Consumer law update: Headline pricing and expanded investigatory powers

On 26 October 2018, the Treasury Laws Amendment (Australian Consumer Law Review) Act 2018 (Cth) came into effect, amending a number of key provisions of the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) and extending investigatory powers available to the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) and Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). This comes as a timely …

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