SOLOMON STAR / PACNEWS – A counterfeit operation involving the repacking of poor quality rice into Solrais packs has been uncovered in the Western Province resulting in the arrest of shop owners.
The operation came to light after the SolRice management engaged undercover agents and the Seghe police to close down to the alleged counterfeit packing operation which has been operating from a store in Seghe, Marovo Lagoon.
The shop was alleged to have 19 cartons of counterfeit packaging and packing equipment ready to fool more consumers in the region into thinking they were eating Solrais, it was revealed.
“In fact, they were buying a poor quality substitute rice from Asia believing it to be Solrais which is an Australian rice of a much higher quality,” the report claimed.
The bags are clearly copies of the Solrais 1kg pack.
General Manager of SolRice Nick Ellis told the Solomon Star,”This is an unforgivable, fraudulent act which intentionally deceives our consumers and we will not allow this to happen.”
He said they will track down all counterfeit operations and will, with the assistance of the police prosecute the offenders to the limit of the law.
Ellis said SolRice is aware of other counterfeit operations and is building a case against each prior to working with the police to raid the stores and arrest those involved.
“Let the Seghe example be a warning to these unscrupulous retailers and importers, that we are aware of what you are doing and we will protect our brand and loyal consumers at all costs.
“We advise strongly that the counterfeiters, no matter where you are in the country, to cease this highly illegal trade immediately as we will close you down and ensure you face court and the full force of the law,” he said.
Kaniva Tonga news has a republication arrangement with PACNEWS