Business

Five year old cigarettes still on the market

Expired goods should never be sold because when consumers pay, they expect the products to fit its purpose. Consumer Council Chief Executive Officer, Premila Kumar, said this after receiving information that stale cigarettes were being sold in Suva. A customer had bought a packet of stale Benson and Hedges (10) or BH10. The customer had been smoking the […]

Peni Shute

February 8, 2016 4:50 pm

Expired goods should never be sold because when consumers pay, they expect the products to fit its purpose.

Consumer Council Chief Executive Officer, Premila Kumar, said this after receiving information that stale cigarettes were being sold in Suva.

A customer had bought a packet of stale Benson and Hedges (10) or BH10.

The customer had been smoking the cigarette when he realised the product had a different taste. Upon investigation, he noticed the different packaging.

The 5 year old packet of cigarette without government health warnings printed on the side. PHOTO: Peni Shute/Newswire
The 5-year-old packet of cigarette, without the current government health warnings, printed on the exterior sides.  Photo: Peni Shute/Newswire

Newswire spoke to British American Tobacco Head of External Affairs, Meliki Tuinamuana, who said the numbers on the packaging indicated the cigarettes were manufactured in 2010.  Tuinamuana said the company does not sell expired goods.

British American Tobacco doesn’t sell expired stock to its wholesales and retailers. The shelf life of our cigarettes is six months.

Tuinamuana said cigarettes were a fast moving consumer good adding they supplied their outlets regularly.

Ms Kumar said it was hard to imagine a trader keeping old stock for more than five years when cigarettes are fast moving items.

She said the Consumer Council rarely received complaints about expired cigarettes which meant consumers are aware of expiry dates.

However, in many cases consumers fail to check the expiry dates and on the other hand traders try to sell such items to unsuspecting consumers.

The Consumer Council reminded manufacturers that it was against the law to sell, display for sale or cause the distribution of expired goods.

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