Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — The Ministry of Health will crank up inspections in HCM City during the run-up to Tết, the Lunar New Year, to unearth fake health products and cosmetics.
At a meeting on Wednesday with the city’s Department of Health and other agencies to discuss action against spurious products, Deputy Minister of Health Phạm Lê Tuấn instructed them to check the process of licensing food supplements, medicinal herbs and cosmetics.
They should carry out more surprise inspections, especially in outlying and neighbouring areas, and be pro-active in obtaining samples for testing, he said.
The department will be assisted in its efforts by the Ministry of Public Security and market management agencies.
Trần Hùng, deputy chief of the secretariat of the National Steering Committee on Prevention and Control of Smuggling, Trade Fraud and Counterfeit Goods, said HCM City is a hub for the production of food supplements, cosmetics, and herbs, and typically fakes abound during Tết.
Lê Văn Giang, deputy head of the Việt Nam Food Administration, said because of the high profits involved, many producers of fake goods have evolved sophisticated methods, making it very hard for authorities to spot them.
His agency is working with the Ministry of Information and Communication to screen media advertising about food supplement for veracity, he said.
Many of these advertisements have been slammed for making exaggerated claims by the National Steering Committee on Prevention and Control of Smuggling, Trade Fraud and Counterfeit Goods.
Besides, relevant agencies have slackened oversight of these products, it added.
This year alone more than 50 tonnes of low-quality herbs have been found by authorities. — VNS