Hooch tragedy in Barabanki claims 16 lives

After the ill-fated death of 16 people in Barabanki, UP due to the consumption of spurious liquor the Uttar Pradesh police have arrested three people whereas the UP Government has announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh each for the deceased. Until now, the police have arrested three people and a salesman who was involved in the sale of spurious country made liquor however, the search of the owner is still underway.

Moreover, the police officials are also conducting raids at different locations to confiscate more stock of similar liquor brands which led to the death of consumers. Meanwhile, the State Government has formed a three-member committee headed by Uttar Pradesh Excise Commissioner to further investigate the matter. The committee has to submit its report within 48 hours to the State Government.

As of now, the district administration has suspended District Excise Officer, Excise Inspector, Ramnagar Circle Officer, and Station House Officer have been suspended with immediate effect. Among the deceased include four members of the same family. Most of the victims belong to Raniganj village in the Ramnagar region of Barabanki district.

Source: First Post

The growth of anti-counterfeiting technology market

There has been a rapid growth of counterfeiting or duplication in different industries across the world. From medicines to food items, consumer electronics to apparels, footwear to FMCG products and much more has been encircled by the menace of counterfeiting.

As per the Global Brand Counterfeiting Report 2018, the amount of total counterfeiting globally has reached to 1.2 Trillion USD in 2017 and is bound to reach 1.82 Trillion USD by the year 2020 which includes counterfeiting of all equipment/products from defence equipment’s to counterfeiting of watches.”

According to the report, “Losses incurred by Luxury Brands because of sale of counterfeiting through internet accounted for 30.3 Billion USD.” The above-stated figures present a grim picture of global business which is suffering from the pandemic called counterfeiting.

However, at the same time in order to protect their products and supply chains from counterfeiting, industries are using different kinds of anti-counterfeiting technologies. As per ISO 12931, all the anti-counterfeiting technologies can be categorized into overt, covert, forensic and digital.

Different types of anti-counterfeiting technologies are being used as per their requirements in different industries. The implementation of these technologies have reaped many benefits which in turn, popularized their application. According to a report by Markets and Markets, the Anti-Counterfeiting Packaging Market will reach a staggering $128.6 billion by 2019.

Here are the four important reasons which are responsible for the growth of anti-counterfeiting technologies.

  1. These technologies significantly reduce the incidents related to counterfeiting, adulteration and tampering and thus help in saving company profits.
  2. With the implementation of anti-counterfeiting technologies, brands can strengthen their image among consumers.
  3. Anti-counterfeiting technologies not just helps in securing the products but, also helps in safeguarding and monitoring of the supply chains.
  4. Anti-counterfeiting technologies also prevent IP infringement or violations.

Countries involved in counterfeiting of US goods

One of the biggest reasons behind the US-China trade war is due to China’s involvement in the practice of unfair trading practices and IP theft to make counterfeit and cheap goods. The biggest hints of counterfeit items are that their prices are too good to be true. The total value of counterfeit items had a value of $1.2 billion.

The enforcement of IP laws is done by US Customs and Border Protection and US Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Homeland Security’s investigations branch is involved in bringing down the financial and welfare risks caused due to imports of such illicit products. Let’s have a look at the product seizures that violated US trademarks and copyrights across the world.

  • China: 48%
  • Hong Kong: 39%
  • Turkey: 2%
  • Canada: 2%
  • Taiwan: 2%
  • All others: 8%

Positive move

In the 1980s, China became a member of the World Intellectual Property Organization and began to strengthen its intellectual property framework and enact related laws. China stated in recent trade talks that its intellectual property royalties paid to the U.S. surged from $3.46 billion in 2011 to $7.2 billion in 2018.

What’s getting counterfeited?

The seizures of ripped-off intellectual property in the U.S. is only a fraction of all that is sold worldwide. The total seizures of counterfeit goods in the fiscal year 2017, with a retail value of $1.2 billion, down from the fiscal year 2016 seizures that totalled $1.38 billion.

International Patents

According to the World Intellectual Property Organization, the U.S. and China file the most international patents under the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

Source: ocregister.com

How effective are smart holographic labels in packaging?

Packaging is very important for the identification, promotion and safety of the product. Amongst the many packaging solutions, labels hold an important place. An effective label not just highlights the product’s information it also ensures the safety of the product against adulteration, tampering etc.

Over the years there have been many innovations in labelling in the packaging industry. A wide variety of labels have been developed according to different product and industry requirements. From Tyvek labels to anti-tamper labels, scratch labels to paper labels, fibre paper labels to in-mould labels and many more- a wide variety of labels are available in the market.

One of the most important aspects which innovators have tried to implement in the labels is that of security. Today, industries are using labels for not just showcasing product or brand information, but also for securing the product.

Holostik is a renowned name in the development and production of smart holographic security labels and has been serving a wide variety of industries across the world. These bespoke smart holographic security labels have digital features and holographic properties along with other printing security features which add multiple layers of security.

The digital features incorporated in these security labels include bar codes and QR codes for instant authentication. This helps the consumer or any other stakeholder of the supply chain for checking the genuineness of the product. No wonder these labels can include a large amount of information and thus save enormous printing costs. The bar codes and QR codes are also used to implement other functionalities of the supply chain like inventory management, loyalty management, track and trace among others.

Smart holographic security labels are an amalgamation of digital and physical technologies which together protect your product against possible counterfeiting, adulteration etc. A few decades back labels were just a marketing product to display product and brand information but now they have evolved drastically.

Counterfeit IMFL blending unit busted in Vellore

A few days back enforcement wing officials busted a fake IMFL (Indian-made foreign liquor) blending unit in Vellore. Police officials arrested five people including a supplier and a marketing executive for operating an illegal unit. Police also seized a car, a mini-van, fake labels of popular liquor brands, bottling machines, holograms and stickers.

The accused has been identified as Manoharan 25 of Kandili Kummudikanpettai village, Govindharaj 60 of Jannalapettai vllage, Saravanan 36 of Goundapanur village, Selvakuma or Tirupattur and Jayakumar of Krishnagiri district.

Police said that counterfeit IMFL was manufactured at an underground unit owned by Saravanan at Eriyur village. The counterfeit liquor was being supplied at different spots at Jawadhu hills in Tiruvannamalai and Krishnagiri district.

VMP Aasithambi ADSP Vellore conducted a surprise vehicle check at Natrampall village and caught three accused, after a getting a tip on the same.

Based on their confession, police officials seized the fake liquors and other equipment used for blending counterfeit liquor. ADSP Vellore said that many more people are involved in the crime and a search is underway to catch them.

Source: TOI 

The growth of counterfeiting in the packaged food industry

Lately, the Food Safety Department seized over 1000 Kg of counterfeit desi ghee from a market in Delhi. Besides the content, the forgers had copied the packaging, trademarks and logos of a popular desi ghee brand and were selling counterfeit in its name. However, the authorities caught the loopholes and seized a large number of fake desi ghee bottles.

Counterfeiting of packaged foods is not something new and there have been numerous incidents related to the same over the past years. From tea to common salt, butter to bread, edible oils to pickles, a large number of packaged eatables have been counterfeited and adulterated.

As per Allied Market Research, “Packaged Food Market size is expected to garner $3.03 trillion by 2020, registering a CAGR of 4.5% during the forecast period 2015 – 2020.” Due to such a massive growth of the packaged food industry, counterfeiters are trying their level best to sell packaged foods by copying the content and packaging of the product.

Counterfeit packaged food is not just harmful to the manufacturers but equally impacts the consumers. According to a paper published by Michigan State University, Global Counterfeit Food & Beverage Packaging: Impacts on Food Safety, “Counterfeit food threats are becoming more common as supply chains become more global and as imaging and manufacturing technology becomes more accessible.”

Counterfeiters refill the original product package, adulterate its contents and copy the labels, logos and other trademarks. In order to check tampering, adulteration and counterfeiting of the original products, manufacturers must use different kinds of anti-counterfeiting packaging technologies. These technologies not just accentuate the brand’s visibility but also secures the brand from duplication and other harmful activities.

Delhi HC orders apparel firm to stop selling fake Under Armour products

Under Armour, the athletic apparel, footwear, and accessories brand got relief from the Delhi High Court in the counterfeit court case brought against a Ludhiana based apparel firm for production and sale of duplicate Under Armour products.

Recently the Delhi HC ordered a Ludhiana based apparel firm to stop selling counterfeit Under Armour products. Under Armour is a globally renowned brand which manufactures athletic apparels, footwear and accessories. The brand got relief from the order as the offender was asked to maintain status quo on title, possession and construction thereof until further orders.

The Delhi High Court passed judgement against the counterfeit manufacturer Amit Apparels in Ludhiana which was operating a large factory to manufacture fake versions of Under Armour, Jordan and Lacoste. In the month of January, Under Armour had filed a civil suit for injunction and damages of Rs 2 crore before Delhi High court against fake products by Amit Apparels. Earlier an FIR was registered against the said manufacturer in Ludhiana under FIR No.308.

Under Armour Inc. is headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland is a marketer and distributor of branded performance athletic apparel, footwear and accessories.

Source: Economic Times

Hot stamping: A revolutionary printing method against counterfeiting

Hot stamping is a revolutionary printing method which is environment-friendly, easy to implement, durable and can include a variety of colours and processes. The printing method has diversified, since its rise to popularity in the 19th century. Post 70s, hot stamping became one of the most popular printing technologies used on plastic products. Once majorly used for only plastic products, hot stamping is now being used for electronic components, cosmetic items, automobile parts to name a few.

Hot stamping involves a process in which a part of the object is efficiently marked with the foil. The hot stamping foil can endure harsh conditions of nature like pressure, temperature, scratches etc. Now, let’s understand the process of hot stamping.

  • In a hot stamping machine, a die is mounted and heated.
  • The product which needs to be stamped is placed beneath the die.
  • A painted roll leaf carrier is inserted between the die and the product.
  • The die presses down through it.
  • The dry paint or foil is impressed onto the surface of the product.

The hot stamping process is easy to apply to the product and packaging.  It is also economical, environment-friendly and secures the product from counterfeiting. Being one of the largest hot stamping foil manufacturers in India Holostik takes advantage of being the leader of the anti-counterfeiting industry in India. We are not only serving our clients in more than 14 different industries but also helping them to choose from different variants of HSF or hot stamping foil.

Health Ministry preparing a draft to counter USTR report

The Indian Health Ministry is preparing a draft to refute US trade representatives (USTR) report that accuses India as one of the main sources of fake medicines across the globe. Arun Singhal, Additional Secretary Health Ministry has dismissed the report and has termed that the Ministry is in the process of preparing a draft to counter USTR report which mentions that India is a global supplier of fake drugs.

The USTR report claims that India and China are the leading hubs for the supply of counterfeit medicines globally. The report states, “While it may not be possible to determine an exact figure, studies have suggested that up to 20% of the drugs sold in the Indian market are counterfeit and could represent a serious threat to patient health and safety.”

Surprisingly, the report is in complete contrast to the government’s own report of 2016 which states that only 3% of the drugs are not of standard quality and 0.0245% are spurious drugs. According to S Eswara Reddy, Drug Controller General of India, “The claim made by USTR tarnishes the image of India which is one of the leading global producers of low-cost generic medicines and hence it’s important to get documentary evidence from them that they used to support their claim.” Leena Menghaney South Asia head of the Access campaign by Médecins Sans Frontières also supports India’s point and says, “MSF supports the health Ministry’s position that the USTR report is a scathing attack on India’s capability of manufacturing large scale affordable generic drugs.”

Source: Live Mint

The growth of counterfeiting in the Agro industry

As per the law of nature, all living beings require energy, nutrients and a sustainable environment for their growth. Plants and trees are no different from the rest of living organisms and require all the above-mentioned essentials. Plants and trees have been cultivated by humans for centuries. Today, with the growth of agricultural technology which includes genetically modified seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, insecticides and advanced farming equipment, the output of crops has grown manifolds.

According to Food Agriculture Organisation, “Agriculture, with its allied sectors, is the largest source of livelihoods in India, 70% of its rural households still depend primarily on agriculture for their livelihood, with 82% of farmers being small and marginal. In 2017-18, total food grain production was estimated at 275 million tonnes.”

However, there has been an upscale growth of spurious agrochemicals and fake agro products which are ruining the overall crop yield badly. These fake products harm the harvest, the soil, environment and the economy of the country. One of the biggest reasons for the rise in counterfeiting of different agrochemicals is the huge demand for agrochemicals in different parts of India. As per FICCI, the Indian agrochemical industry will double in size to $8.1 billion by 2025.

Since spurious agrochemicals are cheap and easily available farmers purchase them on a large scale. Moreover, these chemicals are either ineffective or leave many side effects on the crops. According to industry experts, the formulations do work as pesticides but also leave traces of by-products that badly affect the soil and the environment.

A joint meeting of an FAO-WHO panel on pesticides management was informed of the increasing menace of counterfeit pesticides, estimated to be five per cent to seven per cent of the products in Europe and 20 per cent to 30 per cent of pesticides marketed in developing countries.

Besides being cheap there is a growing demand for spurious agrochemicals because many times farmers are not able to recognise between a genuine and a fake product. Moreover, loopholes in the supply chain also lead to the intrusion of fake products in the market.

Use of spurious agrochemicals is most rampant in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. Use of counterfeit pesticides has spread across India in the agrarian parts of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Haryana, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.