Huwebes, Mayo 26, 2011

Consumers advised to read labels before buying school supplies

With the opening of classes drawing near, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is reminding consumers of school supplies to look at labels carefully.

The start of another school year this June also marks the purchasing of school materials by parents and students alike, and the DTI warns shoppers to be wary of school supplies with toxic or hazardous components.

This was said by DTI Undersecretary Zenaida Maglaya during the Communication and News Exchange Program (CNEX) held at the Philippine Information Agency Conference Room earlier today.

School supplies that might carry heavy substances are crayons, pencils, and plastic products. If ingested, these objects may be hazardous to children, even adults.

This is the reason why consumers should be conscious of what they buy—to read labels and to look for the “DOH-tested” seal, Ms. Malaya added. The seal certifies that the product has been analyzed and tested by the Department of Health (DOH) and has passed quality and safety standards.

Products not bearing the seal must be avoided because these are not tested and they might pose risk to the health of students.

The DTI is continuously inspecting the quality and proper labeling of school supplies. Manufacturers and distributors are covered by Republic Act 7394 or the Consumer Act of the Philippines which requires them to include toxicity warning together with name and address of manufacturer, trade or brand name, type or size of product, country of manufacturer, quantity, and instruction for use.

Meanwhile, the DTI will continue monitoring the price and supply of school supplies in the market. This is to ensure that retailers are following the suggested retail prices (SRPs) of selected school supplies, according to Ms. Maglaya. 

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