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Taipei reported over 600 cases of falsely advertised food, medical items in 2021

Consumers advised to use caution while shopping online, where deceptive marketing thrives

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Taipei's Department of Health releases report for clampdown on illegal advertising. 

Taipei's Department of Health releases report for clampdown on illegal advertising.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taipei recorded 619 cases of misleading advertising for food and medical products in 2021 and imposed a total of NT$45.95 million (US$1.65 million) in fines for the infractions, according to the city's Department of Health (DOH).

In a report released Monday (Feb. 14), the DOH said 336 of these violations were related to food and health supplements. Cosmetics accounted for 234 cases, while false advertising for drugs and medical equipment made up the remaining 49.

Asian Bridge, GNS Taiwan Co., and DAH YOUNG Co were the three companies slapped with the heaviest fines for exaggerated marketing for products, which ranged from chondroitin supplements to shoe soles and body lotion.

The health agency warned that online platforms such as company websites and social media have become hotbeds of deceptive advertising, taking up 79% of the illegal activity last year. This was followed by television (14.4%) and radio (2.9%).

Consumers are advised to use caution while shopping online, as information about the manufacturer is often not fully disclosed. Violators will have their identity published every month on the DOH website.