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Manufacturer agrees to fix fishy labelling

Simplot Australia Pty Ltd (Simplot) has agreed to amend country of origin labelling on 31 frozen fish products, from ‘Made in Australia’ to ‘Packed in Australia’, following concerns raised by the ACCC about whether imported frozen fish may not have been substantially transformed in Australia.

Under the Australian Consumer Law’s Country of Origin labelling provisions, if a food product, such as fish, is packed in Australia without being substantially transformed, it cannot display a ‘Made in Australia’ mark.

The products sold by Simplot’s brands used fish imported from a number of countries including New Zealand, United States and South Africa. The ACCC’s view was that only minor manufacturing processes occurred in Australia and, when viewed collectively, the imported ingredients did not differ fundamentally from the manufactured goods.

Simplot was of the view that slicing, crumbing and par-frying of the frozen fish constituted substantial transformation, justifying the use of the ‘Made in Australia’ mark.  However, after the ACCC raised its concerns, Simplot agreed to change its country of origin labelling on these frozen fish products.

Read more on the ACCC’s website.

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