The Australian Made Campaign (AMCL) has welcomed action taken by the ACCC against online ugg boot seller Happiness Road, trading as Koala Jack.
In October 2012, the Koala Jack website prominently displayed the green and gold Australian Made logo and other statements that the boots were made in Australia.
Following an ACCC investigation Happiness Road admitted that its ugg boots were all made in China. The investigation also revealed that Happiness Road was not authorised to use the Australian Made logo.
The company provided a number of court enforceable undertakings to the ACCC regarding its practices.
Australian Made Chief Executive, Ian Harrison, said it was pleasing that the ACCC recognised the value of the logo and the importance of cracking down on such misleading country of origin claims.
However he warned consumers, particularly tourists, to be particularly vigilant when buying ugg boots and other sheepskin products.
“Many companies and retailers in this industry are marketing their products with a veneer of ‘Australian-ness’ which can be misleading. Iconic Australian names and imagery, coupled with claims such as ‘Australian sheepskin’, ‘Australian owned’, ‘classic Australian’ and so on, give the impression the product is made here when in fact it may be fully imported” said Mr Harrison.
He added that another common practice is the removal of 'Made in China' tags from imported products.
“Consumers who are looking to buy a genuine Aussie product should search the Australian Made website, www.australianmade.com.au, to find companies which are authorised to use the Australian Made logo” said Mr Harrison.
The ACCC's media release on the matter can be found here: https://www.accc.gov.au/media-release/online-ugg-boot-trader-provides-court-enforceable-undertaking-over-‘made-in-australia’