The ACCC’s latest Small Business in Focus report has been released

The ACCC’s bi-annual “Small Business in Focus” report has been released, summarising the ACCC’s work in the small business sector for the period January – June 2014.

ACCC Small Business in Focus report

The main points covered in the latest report are:

  • misleading claims are a continuing issue for the small business sector (over 1500 complaints received in the 13/14 financial year).  The ACCC took action against Coles for claims that its “Cuisine Royal” and “Coles Bakery” bread was “Baked Today, Sold Today” and “Freshly Baked In-Store”.  The ACCC also took action against against Carlton & United Breweries in relation to its representations that Byron Bay Pale Lager was brewed by a small brewer in Byron Bay, when in fact this was not the case.
  • consumer guarantees was also a significant area of focus for the ACCC.  More than 900 complaints were received by the ACCC in the 13/14 financial year (compared to 373 in the previous financial year).
  • the ACCC’s priorities for the 2014 year include emerging online trading issues, complexity and unfairness in consumer or small business contracts, conduct in concentrated markets which impacts on small business consumers or suppliers, credence claims (such as organic and country of origin claims), and consumer guarantees (particularly the sale of extended warranties).
  • the ACCC served a total of 77 audit notices on traders operating within the franchising industry, to check on their compliance with the mandatory industry code, the Franchising Code of Conduct.

Contact Melissa Lammers on 9526 3444 or mlammers@shirelegal.com.au if you require any assistance in relation to trade practices matters.

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