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Consumer Act of the PHILIPPINES

CHAPTER IV LABELING AND FAIR PACKAGING

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GENERAL PROVISIONS
CHAPTER 1CONSUMER PRODUCT QUALITY AND SAFETY
Chapter 2 FOODS, DRUGS, COSMETICS AND DEVICES
DRUGS AND DEVICES
CERTIFICATION OF DRUGS CONTAINING ANTIBIOTICS
COSMETICS
Chapter 3 HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCE
TITLE III PROTECTION AGAINST DECEPTIVE, UNFAIR AND UNCONSCIONABLE SALES ACTS OR PRACTICES
REGULATION OF SALES ACTS AND PRACTICES
CHAPTER II REGULATION OF PRACTICES RELATIVE TO
CHAPTER IIICONSUMER PRODUCT AND SERVICE WARRANTIES
CHAPTER IV LABELING AND FAIR PACKAGING
CHAPTER V LIABILITY FOR PRODUCT AND SERVICE
CHAPTER VI ADVERTISING AND SALES PROMOTION
CHAPTER VII REGULATION OF REPAIR AND SERVICE FIRMS
TITLE IV CONSUMER CREDIT TRANSACTION
TITLE V THE NATIONAL CONSUMER AFFAIRS COUNCIL
CHAPTER II POWERS AND FUNCTIONS
CHAPTER III CONSUMER COMPLAINTS
TITLE VI TRANSITORY AND FINAL PROVISIONS
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Art. 74. Declaration of Policy. - The State shall enforce compulsory labeling, and fair packaging to enable the consumer to obtain accurate information as to the nature, quality and quantity of the contents of consumer products and to facilitate his comparison of the value of such products.
 

Art. 75. Implementing Agency. - The Department of Trade and Industry shall enforce the provisions of this Chapter and its implementing rules and regulations: Provided, That with respect to food, drugs, cosmetics, devices and hazardous substances, it shall be enforced by the concerned department.

 

Art. 76. Prohibited Acts on Labeling and Packaging. - It shall be unlawful for any person, either as principal or agent, engaged in the labeling or packaging of any consumer product, to display or distribute or to cause to be displayed or distributed in commerce any consumer product whose package or label does not conform to the provisions of this Chapter.

 

The prohibition in this Chapter shall not apply to persons engaged in the business of wholesale or retail distributors of consumer products except to the extent that such persons:

(a) are engaged in the packaging or labeling of such products;
 

(b) prescribe or specify by any means the manner in which such products are packaged or labeled; or

 

(c) having knowledge, refuse to disclose the source of the mislabeled or mispackaged products.

Art. 77. Minimum Labeling Requirements for Consumer Products. - All consumer products domestically sold whether manufactured locally or imported shall indicate the following in their respective labels of packaging:

(a) its correct and registered trade name or brand name;
 

(b) its duly registered trademark;

 

(c) its duly registered business name;

 

(d) the address of the manufacturer, importer, repacker of the consumer product in the Philippines;

 

(e) its general make or active ingredients;

(f) the net quality of contents, in terms of weight, measure or numerical count rounded of to at least the nearest tenths in the metric system;
 

(g) country of manufacture, if imported; and

 

(h) if a consumer product is manufactured, refilled or repacked under license from a principal, the label shall so state the fact.

The following may be required by the concerned department in accordance with the rules and regulations they will promulgate under authority of this Act:

(a) whether it is flammable or inflammable;
 

(b) directions for use, if necessary;

 

(c) warning of toxicity;

 

(d) wattage, voltage or amperes; or

 

(e) process of manufacture used if necessary.

Any word, statement or other information required by or under authority of the preceding paragraph shall appear on the label or labeling with such conspicuousness as compared with other words, statements, designs or devices therein, and in such terms as to render it likely to be read and understood by the ordinary individual under customary conditions of purchase or use.
The above requirements shall form an integral part of the label without danger of being erased or detached under ordinary handling of the product.

 

Art. 78. Philippine Product Standard Mark. - The label may contain the Philippine Product Standard Mark if it is certified to have passed the consumer product standard prescribed by the concerned department.

 

Art. 79. Authority of the Concerned Department to Provide for Additional Labeling and Packaging Requirements. - Whenever the concerned department determines that regulations containing requirements other than those prescribed in Article 77 hereof are necessary to prevent the deception of the consumer or to facilitate value comparisons as to any consumer product, it may issue such rules and regulations to:

(a) establish and define standards for characterization of the size of a package enclosing any consumer product which may be used to supplement the label statement of net quality, of contents of packages containing such products but this clause shall not be construed as authorizing any limitation on the size, shape, weight, dimensions, or number of packages which may be used to enclose any product;
 

(b) regulate the placement upon any package containing any product or upon any label affixed to such product of any printed matter stating or representing by implication that such product is offered for retail at a price lower than the ordinary and customary retail price or that a price advantage is accorded to purchases thereof by reason of the size of the package or the quantity of its contents;

 

(c) prevent the nonfunctional slack-fill of packages containing consumer products.

For purposes of paragraph (c) of this Article, a package shall be deemed to be nonfunctionally slack-filled if it is filled to substantially less than its capacity for reasons other than (1) protection of the contents of such package; (2) the requirements of machines used for enclosing the contents in such package; or (3) inherent characteristics of package materials or construction being used.

Art. 80. Special Packaging of Consumer Products for the Protection of Children. - The concerned department may establish standards for the special packaging of any consumer product if it finds that:

(a) the degree or nature of the hazard to children in the availability of such product, by reason of its packaging, is such that special packaging is required to protect children from serious personal injury or serious illness resulting from handling and use of such product; and
 

(b) the special packaging to be required by such standard is technically feasible, practicable and appropriate for such product. In establishing a standard under this Article, the concerned department shall consider:

 

(1) the reasonableness of such standard;
 

(2) available scientific, medical and engineering data concerning special packaging and concerning accidental, ingestions, illnesses and injuries caused by consumer product;

 

(3) the manufacturing practices of industries affected by this Article; and

 

(4) the nature and use of consumer products.

Art. 81. Price Tag Requirement. - It shall be unlawful to offer any consumer product for retail sale to the public without an appropriate price tag, label or marking publicly displayed to indicate the price of each article and said products shall not be sold at a price higher than that stated therein and without discrimination to all buyers: Provided, That lumber sold, displayed or offered for sale to the public shall be tagged or labeled by indicating thereon the price and the corresponding official name of the wood: Provided, further, That if consumer products for sale are too small or the nature of which makes it impractical to place a price tag thereon price list placed at the nearest point where the products are displayed indicating the retail price of the same may suffice.
 

Art. 82. Manner of Placing Price Tags. - Price tags, labels or markings must be written clearly, indicating the price of the consumer product per unit in pesos and centavos.

 

Art. 83. Regulations for Price Tag Placement. - The concerned department shall prescribe rules and regulations for the visible placement of price tags for specific consumer products and services. There shall be no erasures or alterations of any sort of price tags, labels or markings.

 

Art. 84. Additional Labeling Requirements for Food. - The following additional labeling requirements shall be imposed by the concerned department for food:

(a) expiry or expiration date, where applicable;
 

(b) whether the consumer product is semi-processed, fully processed, ready-to-cook, ready-to-eat, prepared food or just plain mixture;

 

(c) nutritive value, if any;

 

(d) whether the ingredients use are natural or synthetic, as the case may be;

 

(e) such other labeling requirements as the concerned department may deem necessary and reasonable.

Art. 85. Mislabeled Food. - A food shall also be deemed mislabeled:

(a) if its labeling or advertising is false or misleading in any way;
 

(b) if it is offered for sale under the name of another food;

 

(c) if it is an imitation of another food, unless its label bears in type of uniform size and prominence, the word "imitation" and, immediately thereafter, the name of the food imitated;

 

(d) its containers is so made, formed, or filled as to be misleading;

 

(e) if in package form unless it bears a label conforming to the requirements of this Act: Provided, That reasonable variation on the requirements of labeling shall be permitted and exemptions as to small packages shall be established by the regulations prescribed by the concerned department of health;

 

(f) if any word, statement or other information required by or under authority of this Act to appear on the principal display panel of the label or labeling is not prominently placed thereon with such conspicuousness as compared with other words, statements, designs or devices in the labeling and in such terms as to render it likely to be read and understood by the ordinary individual under customary conditions of purchase and use;

 

(g) if it purports to be or is represented as a food for which a definition or standard of identity has been prescribed unless:

 

(1) it conforms to such definition and standard; and
 

(2) its labels bears the name of the food specified in the definition or standards, and insofar as may be required by such regulations, the common names of optional ingredients other than spices, flavoring and coloring, present in such food;

(h) if it purports to be or represented as:

(1) a food for which a standard of quality has been prescribed by regulations as provided in this Act and its quality fall below such standard, unless its label bears in such manner and form as such regulations specify, a statement that it falls below such standard; or
 

(2) a food for which a standard or standards or fill of container have been prescribed by regulations as provided by this Act and it falls below the standard of fill of container applicable thereto, unless its label bears, in such manner and form as such regulations specify, a statement that it falls below such standard;

i) if it is not subject to the provisions of paragraph (g) of this Article unless its label bears:

(1) the common or usual name of the food, if there be any; and
 

(2) in case it is manufactured or processed from two or more ingredients, the common or usual name of such ingredient; except the spices, flavorings and colorings other than those sold as such, may be designated as spices, flavorings and colorings without naming each: Provided, That to the extent that compliance with the requirement of clause (2) of this paragraph is impracticable or results in deception or unfair competition, exemptions shall be established by regulations promulgated by the concerned department of health;

(j) if it purports to be or is represented for special dietary uses, unless its label bears such information concerning its vitamin or mineral or other dietary properties as the concerned department determines to be, or by regulations prescribed as necessary in order fully to inform purchasers as its value for such uses;
 

(k) if it bears or contains any artificial flavoring, artificial coloring, or chemical preservative, unless it bears labeling, stating that fact: Provided, That to the extent that compliance with the requirements of this paragraph is impracticable, exemptions shall be established by regulations promulgated by the concerned department. The provisions of this paragraph or paragraphs (g) and (i) with respect to the artificial coloring shall not apply in the case of butter, cheese or ice cream.

 

Art. 86. Labeling of Drugs. - The Generics Act shall apply in the labeling of drugs.

 

Art. 87. Additional Labeling Requirements for Cosmetics. - The following additional requirements may be required for cosmetics:

(a) expiry or expiration date;
 

(b) whether or not it may be an irritant;

 

(c) precautions or contra-indications; and

 

(d) such other labeling requirements as the concerned department may deem necessary and reasonable.

Art. 88. Special Labeling Requirements for Cosmetics. - A cosmetic shall be deemed mislabeled:

(a) if its labeling or advertising is false or misleading in any way;
 

(b) if in package form unless it bears a label conforming to the requirements of labeling provided for in this Act or under existing regulations: Provided, That reasonable variations shall be permitted, and exemptions as to small packages shall be established by regulations prescribed by the concerned department;

 

(c) if any word, statement or other information required by or under authority of this Act to appear on the label or labeling is not prominently placed thereon with such conspicuousness, as compared with other words, statements, designs or devices in the labeling, and in such terms as to render it likely to be read and understood by the ordinary individual under customary conditions of purchase and use;

 

(d) if its container is so made, formed or filled as to be misleading; or

 

(e) if its label does not state the common or usual name of its ingredients.

Art. 89. Mislabeled Drugs and Devices. - A drug or device shall be deemed to be mislabeled:

(a) if its labeling is false or misleading in any way;
 

(b) if its in package form unless it bears a label conforming to the requirements of this Act or the regulations promulgated therefor: Provided, that reasonable variations shall be permitted and exemptions as to small packages shall be established by regulations prescribed by the concerned department.

 

(c) if any word, statement or other information required by or under authority of this Act to appear on the principal display panel of the label or labeling is not prominently placed thereon with such conspicuousness as compared with other words, statements, designs or devices in the labeling and in such terms as to render it likely to be read and understood by the ordinary individual under customary conditions of purchase and use;

 

(d) if it is for use by man and contains any quantity of the narcotic or hypnotic substance alpha-eucaine, barbituric acid, beta-eucaine, bromal, cannabis, carbromal, chloral, coca, cocaine, codeine, heroin, marijuana, morphine, opium, paraldehyde, peyote or sulfonmethane, or any chemical derivative of such substance, which derivative has been designated by the concerned department after investigation, and by regulations as habit forming; unless its label bears the name and quantity or proportion of such substance or derivative and in juxtaposition therewith the statement "Warning-May be habit forming";

 

(e) its labeling does not bear:

 

(1) adequate directions for use; and

(2) such adequate warning against use in those pathological conditions or by children where its use may be dangerous to health, or against unsafe dosage or methods or duration of administration or application, in such manner and form, as are necessary for the protection of users: Provided, That where any requirement of clause (1) of this paragraph, as applied to any drug or device, is not necessary for the protection of the public health, the concerned department may promulgate regulations exempting such drug or device from such requirement;
 

(f) if it purports to be a drug the name of which is recognized in an official compendium, unless it is packaged and labeled as prescribed therein: Provided, That the method of packing may be modified with the consent of the concerned department;
 

(g) if it has been found by the concerned department to be a drug liable to deterioration, unless it is packaged in such form and manner, and its label bears a statement of such precautions, as the concerned department, shall by regulations, require as necessary for the protection of the public health;

 

(h) (1) if it is a drug and its container is so made, formed or filled as to be misleading; or

(2) if it is an imitation of another drug; or

(3) if it is dangerous to health when used in the dosage, or with the frequency of duration prescribed, recommended or suggested in the labeling thereof;

 

(i) if it is, purports to be or is represented as a drug composed wholly or partly of insulin or of any kind of penicillin, streptomycin, chlortetracycline, chloramphenicol, bacitracin, or any other antibiotic drug, or any derivative thereof, unless:

 

(1) it is from a batch with respect to which a certificate of release has been issued pursuant to regulations of the concerned department; and
 

(2) such certificate of release is in effect with respect to such drug: Provided, That this paragraph shall not apply to any drug or class of drugs exempted by regulations promulgated under Authority of this Act.

Art. 90. Regulation-making Exemptions. - The concerned department may promulgate regulations exempting from any labeling requirements of this Act food, cosmetics, drugs or devices which are, in accordance with the practice of trade, to be processed, labeled or repacked in substantial quantities at establishments other than those where originally processed, labeled or packed on condition that such food, cosmetics, drugs or devices are not adulterated or mislabeled under the provisions of this Act and other applicable laws upon approval from such processing, labeling and repacking establishments.
 

Art. 91. Mislabeled Hazardous Substances. - Hazardous substances shall be deemed mislabeled when:

(a) having been intended or packaged in a form suitable for use in households, especially for children, the packaging or labeling of which is in violation of the special packaging regulations issued by the concerned department;
 

(b) such substance fails to bear a label:

 

(1) which states conspicuously:
 

(i) the name and the place of business of the manufacturer, packer, distributor or seller;
 

(ii) the common or usual name or the chemical name, if there be no common or usual name, of the hazardous substance or of each component which contributes substantially to the harmfulness of the substance, unless the concerned department by regulation permits or requires the use of the recognized generic name;

 

(iii) the signal word "danger" on substances which are extremely flammable, corrosive or highly toxic;

 

(iv) the signal word "warning" or "caution" with a bright red or orange color with a black symbol on all other hazardous substances;

 

(v) a clear statement as to the possible injury it may cause if used improperly;

 

(vi) precautionary measures describing the action to be followed or avoided;

 

(vii) instructions when necessary or appropriate for first-aid treatment;

 

(viii) the word "poison" for any hazardous substance which is defined as highly toxic;

 

(ix) instructions for handling and storage of packages which require special care in handling and storage; and

 

(x) the statement "keep out of the reach of children", or its practical equivalent, if the article is not intended for use by children and is not a banned hazardous substance, with adequate directions for the protection of children from the hazard involved. The aforementioned signal words, affirmative statements, description of precautionary measures, necessary instructions or other words or statements may be in English language or its equivalent in Filipino; and

 

(2) on which any statement required under clause 1) of this paragraph is located prominently in bright red and orange color with a black symbol in contrast typography, layout or color with the other printed matters on the label.

Art. 92. Exemptions. - If the concerned department finds that for good or sufficient reasons, full compliance with the labeling requirements otherwise applicable under this Act is impracticable or is not necessary for the adequate protection of public health and safety, it shall promulgate regulations exempting such substances from these requirements to the extent it deems consistent with the objective of adequately safeguarding public health and safety, and any hazardous substance which does not bear a label in accordance with such regulations shall be deemed mislabeled hazardous substance.
 

Art. 93. Grounds for Seizure and Condemnation of Mislabeled Hazardous Substances. - (a) Any mislabeled hazardous substance when introduced into commerce or while held for sale shall be liable to be proceeded against and condemned upon order of the concerned department in accordance with existing procedure for seizure and condemnation of articles in commerce: Provided, That this Article shall not apply to a hazardous substance intended for export to any foreign country if:

(1) it is in a package labeled in accordance with the specifications of the foreign purchaser;
 

(2) it is labeled in accordance with the laws of the foreign country;

 

(3) it is labeled on the outside of the shipping package to show that it is intended for export; and

(4) it is so exported,

(b) any hazardous substance condemned under this Article shall after entry of order of condemnation be disposed of by destruction or sale as the concerned department may direct, and the proceeds thereof, if sold, less the legal cost and charges, shall be paid into the treasury of the Philippines; but such hazardous substance shall not be sold under any order which is contrary to the provisions of this Act: Provided, That, after entry of the order and upon the payment of the costs of such proceedings and the execution of a good and sufficient bond conditioned that such hazardous substance shall not be sold or disposed of contrary to the provisions of this Act, the concerned department may direct that such hazardous substance be delivered to or retained by the owner thereof for destruction or for alteration to comply with the provisions of this Act under the supervision of an officer or employee duly designated by the concerned department. The expenses for such supervision shall be paid by the person obtaining release of the hazardous substance under bond.
c) all expenses in connection with the destruction provided for in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this Article and all expenses in connection with the storage and labor with respect to such hazardous substance shall be paid by the owner or consignee, and default in such payment shall constitute a lien against any importation by such owner or consignee.

 

Art. 94. Labeling Requirements of Cigarettes. - All cigarettes for sale or distribution within the country shall be contained in a package which shall bear the following statement or its equivalent in Filipino: "Warning: Cigarette Smoking is Dangerous to Your Health". Such statement shall be located in conspicuous place on every cigarette package and shall appear in conspicuous and legible type in contrast by typography, layout or color with other printed matter on the package. Any advertisement of cigarette shall contain the name warning as indicated in the label.

 

Art. 95. Penalties. - (a) Any person who shall violate the provisions of Title III, Chapter IV of this Act, or its implementing rules and regulations, except Articles 81 to 83 of the same Chapter, shall be subject to a fine of not less than Five hundred pesos (P500.00) but not more than Twenty thousand pesos (P20,000.00) or imprisonment of not less than three (3) months but not more than two (2) years or both, at the discretion of the court: Provided, That, if the consumer product is one which is not a food, cosmetic, drug, device or hazardous substance, the penalty shall be a fine of not less than Two hundred pesos (P200.00) but not more than Five thousand pesos (P5,000.00) or imprisonment of not less than one (1) month but not more than one (1) year or both, at the discretion of the court.

 

(b) Any person who violates the provisions of Articles 81 to 83 for the first time shall be subject to a fine of not less than Two hundred pesos (P200.00) but not more than Five thousand pesos (P5,000.00) or by imprisonment of not less than one (1) month but not more than six (6) months or both, at the discretion of the court. A second conviction under this paragraph shall also carry with it the penalty of revocation of business permit and license.

 

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