EDITORIAL| Avoid being duped

WITH MORE and more people relying on the Internet for work, studies, communication and networking, it goes without saying that there is also a growing online selling and buying business. With the diverse and easy to search special products available in the web, many young people turn to these marketing sites to do their shopping from national and international suppliers.

From clothes, shoes, cosmetics, appliances, gadgets, and whatever one can think of – all these can be within one’s reach as long as a person has an internet connection and a credit card or Paypal. The internet is deluged with an array of products simply because being an entrepreneur online is too easy.

Buying online saves time for those who are busy and find going to malls tedious. Even dinner can be ordered online and delivered within minutes. Usually, those who patronize are quite savvy and sophisticated when it comes to discerning which items on sale in the internet are good as gold because they also do a lot of search and verification. But how about those who are not as literate on the web and who cannot separate the chaff from the grain, especially products that are consumed like food supplements?

The ads of food supplements are very enticing and use personal accounts of people who endorse the product swearing that their diseases – from acnes to cancer, were cured when they used these products.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently warned the public on several unregistered food supplements being sold online. It said that since these products have not gone through the testing process of the FDA, it could not guarantee the quality and safety and may be hazardous to consumers.

It also cautioned that food products, including food supplements, “should not bear any misleading, deceptive, and false claims in their labels and/or any promotional materials that will provide erroneous impression on products’ character or identity.”

Those who want to check if the product is FDA compliant can go to the FDA website www.fda.gov.ph.

It pays to be prudent when using the web.

Posted in Opinion