Tebogo Msimanga |
The National Consumer Commission (NCC) has launched an investigation into allegations of price hike relating to garlic and ginger. This follows an outcry by consumers carried in the media including social media platforms regarding alleged excessive prices of both products by various suppliers.
Food Lovers Market, Spar Group, Pick n Pay, Shoprite Group, Boxer Superstores, Cambridge Foods and Woolworths are under investigation. The law defines price gouging as an unfair or unreasonable price increase that does not correspond to or is not equivalent to the increase in the cost of providing that good or service.
Acting Consumer Commissioner Thezi Mabuza said the Commission initiated this investigation, as empowered by Section 71 of the Consumer Protection Act (CPA), following a public outcry. “This was done to protect consumers against unconscionable, unfair, unreasonable, unjust or improper commercial practises during the national disaster”.
Mabuza said their investigation is not limited to these suppliers. “We urge consumers throughout the country to monitor the market and where they suspect excessive price increase, they must file complaints with the Commission.” Consumers are urged to lodge complaints by contacting the NCC at 0800 014 880 or 012 428 7000 during office hours.