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Thread: Pack Sizes - Whom to ask for information ?

  1. #33
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    Re: Pack Sizes - Whom to ask for information ?


    I strongly feel this forum should also allow members to "sympathise" with the author of a post, just as it allows one to say "thanks".

    I personally feel from my limited study that The RTI Act as it stands, in the environment it is supposed to work, with the state of records and bureaucracy, is not yet ripe for use by the lay public. I think, the objective of the Act is just the fulfilment of Section 4.1(a) through public pressure, public effort and public money. That objective is itself laudable, no doubt.

    Karira, people like you.... (I could just stop the sentence here.)
    Karira, people like you are the pioneers who are moulding things so that the Act in a future version really becomes an instrument for spectacular public use at a future date.

    Thanks.


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    -- पूराब्यौरा

    Then God said, "Let there be light"... but we said, no, we want first the RTI! Then we will light up our own lives, and those of our fellow beings. But God said, "No, I can't. I am not a fool to open my books to you. Go away!"

  2. #34
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    Re: Pack Sizes - Whom to ask for information ?


    Thanks Karira for all the efforts and drafts.

    Recently, I also had a doubt of a similar nature. Can anyone answer...
    Does a product manufacturer has any obligation to mention where it is made? (Made in .......(country)).

    Edit: Pages 4(including this one) can also be written as Page 1of4, page 2of4,...
    Last edited by gmphadte; 04-01-10 at 04:19 PM.

  3. #35
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    Re: Pack Sizes - Whom to ask for information ?


    I think the rules specify that if the product is imported, it should mention the "Country of Origin"
    Twitter: @cjkarira

  4. #36
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    Re: Pack Sizes - Whom to ask for information ?



    As reported by SARAH JACOB & RATNA BHUSHAN in economictimes.indiatimes.com on 08 Dec 2011:
    Government move to restrict pack sizes and weight irks FMCG companies - The Economic Times

    Government move to restrict pack sizes and weight irks FMCG companies

    BANGALORE/NEW DELHI: A government move to restrain companies from changing pack sizes and weight of products such as soaps, detergent, biscuits and coffee to help consumers easily compare them is facing strong resistance from makers of these products.

    The ministry of consumer affairs wants about 20 packaged products to be retailed only in stipulated pack sizes. But marketers say this will take away their flexibility to buffer the impact of inflation on the consumer and urged the government to at least keep sensitive price points such as Re 1, Rs 2, Rs 5, Rs 10 and Rs 20 out of this rule in the interest of the lower-income group.

    "The manufacturers should be given the flexibility to pack such quantities as they consider to be appropriate at such price points," a Hindustan Unilever spokesperson said. The ministry issued a notification, Packaged Commodities Rules 2011, on October 24, saying baby food, weaning food, biscuits, butter, cereals, bread, tea, coffee, edible oil, beverages, milk powder, rice, atta, salt, aerated drinks, mineral water, soap, detergents, cement and paint must be retailed only in stipulated pack sizes.

    "Consumers will now be able to compare brands easily as they will all be of the same weight," a senior official from the department of legal metrology, said. The new policy comes into effect from July next year.

    The official said that in some cases, manufacturers were incrementally increasing grammage into non-standard sizes but charging a much higher price.

    Consumer goods makers have been reducing pack sizes while keeping prices constant for the past two-three years when prices of raw materials such as palm oil, sugar and wheat, and other costs have been escalating-effectively charging the consumer the same for less, thus protecting their profitability.

    So, coffee brands are retailed in 170 gram and 175 gm packs, while detergents are available at 713 gm and 400 gm, which will not be allowed once the new rules are implemented.

    The government has now stipulated different weight restrictions on different products. For example, coffee can only be retailed in 25 gm, 50 gm, 100 gm, 500 gm, 1 kg and thereafter in multiples of 1 kg. For certain categories such as detergents and milk powder, there is no restriction below 50 gm. And salt can be sold below 50 gm in multiples of 10 gm.

    Violations will invite fines from Rs 25,000 up to Rs 1 lakh. Most companies say the move will make shopping more difficult for price-sensitive consumers.

    "The entire value chain was based on consumer convenience, particularly with Rs 5 and Rs 10 packs," ITC Foods CEO Chitranjan Dar said.

    The new policy will impact the company's Sunfeast biscuits, but will not make any difference to Aashirvaad atta and salt because they are retailed in standard sizes. "Promotional strategies such as offering extra on a pack will not be possible now," Dar said.

    The head of another prominent biscuit maker said the move will impact both sales and profits. "We are lobbying against this move...especially at a time when we are reaching out to consumers in smaller markets," said the person, requesting anonymity.



    A Mahendran, MD of Godrej Consumer Products, which makes Cinthol soap and Ezee liquid washes, said the Indian Soap & Toiletries Makers' Association will make representations to the government on the notification.

    The association represents Hindustan Unilever, Procter & Gamble and Godrej Consumer Products among others. Dalip Jolly, executive member of the Detergent Manufacturers Association of India and MD of Fena, too wants the government to revisit the decision.

    "As long as accurate weights and prices are printed on packs, we believe status quo on packaging norms should remain," he said. "It's not as if we are misleading consumers in any way." Jolly added that there are no such restrictions in most developed countries.

    But there are those who see merit in the government action. Prathish Nair, director of brand consultancy Transcend, said the move will create a level-playing field for smaller brands that cannot afford to change pack sizes frequently. The country's largest dairy brand Amul too has welcomed the move. "We are in favour of this move as it will benefit the consumer. Many times the consumers don't realise that the sizes of packs they have bought have been reduced," said RS Sodhi, MD of Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation.
    Twitter: @cjkarira

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    Re: Pack Sizes - Whom to ask for information ?


    I am just wondering, whether it is worth it to file a RTI afresh on this matter once again and check as to why:

    1. The Government has changed its attitude suddenly and wants to revert to the old system ?
    2. Have they published this fact as mandated under Sec 4(1)(c) of the RTI Act 2005 ?

    But at least one thing is good, the Government realised its folly of being misled by industry !

    Wonder whether my long RTI battle had to do anything with it.
    Twitter: @cjkarira

  6. #38
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    Re: Pack Sizes - Whom to ask for information ?


    Karira, I have no doubt about the role played by your RTI application on this issue. BTW, what happened to the penalty imposed on the PIO? Has he paid it?
    Defeat is not final when you fall down. It is final when you refuse to get up.

  7. #39
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    Re: Pack Sizes - Whom to ask for information ?


    Quote Originally Posted by ganpat1956 View Post
    Karira, I have no doubt about the role played by your RTI application on this issue. BTW, what happened to the penalty imposed on the PIO? Has he paid it?
    I was never given "information" !
    Twitter: @cjkarira

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    Re: Pack Sizes - Whom to ask for information ?


    Food and Drug Administration, Parbhani, Maharashtra denied me the information under Office Clause 7(1) & 7(9)... Due to lack of man power, inconvenient electricity supply, etc. My first appeal also denied giving the same reasons.
    I need your help to frame the second appeal. Can you? The last date for second appeal is Dec 28, 2011.

    Thank you.

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