Safety First Fight Counterfeit With Right Packaging

The federal bureau of investigation fbi has called counterfeiting the crime of the 21st century.


The federal bureau of investigation fbi has called counterfeiting the crime of the 21st century, and the packaging industry is far from immune from those illegal and economically destructive activities. John spink, associate director of the anticounterfeiting and product protection program at michigan state university, laid out specific areas of food safety that should concern the packaging industry during a highly topical presentation at the 2009 global pouch forum. Spink, one of the country&rsquos foremost experts on food safety in packaging, said the food threat from global counterfeit goods is estimated at 49bn and includes a surge in activity to illegally substitute, adulterate, or copy food packaging. The packaging industry must not only be vigilant against future attacks which can affect not only product sales but liability issues but should take actions to reduce the potential for fraud and food safety concerns. &ldquofocus on the root of the risk and actions, and look at the chemistry of the crime,&rdquo spink said during a novel session at the forum devoted to food safety. Spink advocated a few methods to counteract a terrorist or criminal threat. They include overt features such as holograms or reversible printing and more covert, forensic technologies such as radio frequency identification rfid tags in a substrate or complex microprinting marks on a package. Lynn dornblaser, director of cpg trend insight for mintel international, looked at the issue from a consumer perspective in a companion presentation. She stated that &ldquofear is on consumers&rsquo minds, prompted by the economy&rdquo and that consumers are always apprehensive and worried about their jobs. Dornblaser emphasized it is better to give consumers a subtle message that a pouch format is safe rather than overtly communicating a message of fear. Dornblaser said that in the current world environment, powerful, timetested brands could be the biggest winners, while new entrants must work hard to establish trust.

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