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Consumer Protection Court fines Voltic Ghana, FDA and others for conspiring to deceive the public

The court ruled that, “it is unlawful for a person to manufacture, label, package, sell or advertise a food in a manner that is false, misleading or deceptive as regards its character, nature, substance or quality”.

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A Kumasi Commercial Court has granted a restraining order on the production of “Voltic Cool Pac” sachet water.

The court presided over by Justice Dr. Osei Hwere also awarded a cost of GH¢ 500.00 each against the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) and six other registered sachet producers.  

The injunction followed a writ filed against Voltic Ghana Limited together with the FDA, Nivaansh Manufacturing Limited, A.R. Zare, Adat Water Limited, Straight Gate Ministry, Tasty Urban Water Limited and Right River Enterprise.

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The plaintiff, Century Investment Limited which is also a sachet water producing company filed the action against the aforementioned defendants  over what it claims, is unfair trading practice.

The company went to court seeking a declaration that the arrangement under which the six companies are using the franchise of Voltic to produce “Voltic Cool Pac” amount to unfair trading, deception of consumers and the public, and a passing off.

It also sought for an order of injunction, which was granted, when the case came up for hearing on Thursday.

According to the GNA, only Voltic Ghana, entered appearance and the court awarded the GH¢ 500.00 cost against the other defendants for failing to enter appearance.

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In its statement of claim, Century Investment said among other things that, Voltic and the six other companies have for some time now been producing sachet water with the brand name “Cool Pac” and with different registered/licensed numbers embossed on the various 500milligram (ml) sachets.

It further claimed that they have been packaging the sachet water in 500ml sachets with the inscription ‘Cool Pac’ but on the larger packs containing 30 pieces of 500mls sachets of water, the name ‘Voltic’ is added to the brand name Cool Pac to read “Voltic Cool Pac’.

According to the plaintiff, “it is unlawful for a person to manufacture, label, package, sell or advertise a food in a manner that is false, misleading or deceptive as regards its character, nature, substance or quality."

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It maintained that the arrangement between Voltic and the six other sachet producers by which the latter produced sachet water with the franchise of Voltic under the brand name ‘Voltic Cool Pac’ was a deception of the unsuspecting consumer and amounted to unfair trading and passing off.

Regarding the Food and Drugs Authority, Century Investment stated that it had reneged on its duty to protect the consuming public from false, deceptive labelling and branding of water produced by the defendants.

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