Made in Australia claim investigated

A lamp with a Made in China label, which came in a box marked Made in Australia.
A lamp with a Made in China label, which came in a box marked Made in Australia.

In September, it was brought to the attention of candle retailer Dusk, that items that carried a Made in Australia label on the box also carried Made in China labels on the actual product.

The customer, an Eastern Reporter staff member, received a refund and apology and it appeared the Dusk employee took the complaint seriously, was embarrassed and gave an assurance the problem would be fixed.

Dusk general ganager Travis Liddle said after the initial complaint in September, a notice was sent to all stores.

‘Unfortunately one of our stores did not follow the instructions and disappointingly failed to correct the packaging,’ she said.

‘Another notice was re-issued out to all 96 stores to ensure this change had been actioned correctly and that under no circumstance were the incorrect boxes to be displayed until action was taken.’

But on October 19, the same customer returned to the store to find the Made in China lamps still being sold at $29.95 in cardboard boxes marked Made in Australia. Again, it was brought to the attention of Dusk.

Dusk Customer Care Manager Prastidis said she was disappointed the Morley staff had not fixed the problem.

‘It has been formally addressed with the store manager and Morley team, and the notice reissued to all our stores,’ she said.

‘We agree, this is simply unacceptable.

‘We are proud to pour the majority of our scented candles here in Perth, however we do not make our d�cor in Australia and work very closely with overseas suppliers.’

Ms Prastidis said it was never Dusk’s intention to deceive or misinform customers.

Consumer Protection WA was told about the customer’s grievance after the second incident. ‘On October, 22 as part of an investigation, an officer from Consumer Protection’s Retail, Building and Services branch visited the Morley Dusk store and purchased one of the lamps described, which had a Made in China sticker placed over a Made in Australia sticker on the box,’ a spokeswoman said.

‘We continue to look into this matter.’

Eastern Reporter editor Karen Valenti bought the lamp, which appealed to her because she thought it was made in Australia. A decision was made to write the story and ask Consumer Protection to investigate after she visited the store a month later and found Dusk was still selling the made in China lamp in a Made in Australia cardboard box.

Editorial, page 8