MADRID – Consumer organisation FACUA has asked Lidl to remove an “apricot-flavoured cleaner” from its shelves because of its resemblance to a soft drink.
It is a cleaner and paint protector for cars of the Robbyrob brand. It is sold in packaging that can cause confusion among consumers and, in particular, entice children to consume it.
The association was made aware of this product by a user on Twitter and checked it themselves by going to a Lidl store.
Consequently, FACUA has filed a complaint against Walter Schmidt, the manufacturer of the product, with the General Directorate of Consumer Affairs and the Spanish Agency for Food Safety and Nutrition Aesan of the Ministry of Consumer Affairs.
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The sanitary regulations for the production, distribution and trade of detergents and cleaning products stipulate that “products which have a shape, odour, colour, appearance, presentation, labelling, volume or size which are likely to cause consumers, especially children, to confuse them with foods and putting them in their mouths, sucking them or ingesting them are not allowed.”
Similarly, a European Regulation in this area states that “packaging containing a dangerous substance or mixture and supplied to the general public must not have a shape or design that attracts or arouses the curiosity of children, nor must it mislead consumers, and they must not have a presentation or design similar to that of food, feed, pharmaceutical or cosmetic products, which could mislead consumers.”
Transparent bottle with yellow-orange liquid
This cleaner and paint protector is sold in all Lidl stores in Spain. It is made in Germany and is sold in a one-litre bottle with a red cap and a transparent bottle in which the yellow-orange liquid can be seen.
Plus, it says “with apricot flavour” on it. The smell of this fruit can give the impression, especially in children, that it is a drinkable product. Furthermore, the main label of the product is in English and German, which makes it even more difficult for the Spanish consumer to understand that it is not fit for consumption.
For all these reasons, FACUA has requested that a sanctions procedure be initiated against the company Walter Schmidt for violation of the applicable regulations regarding the distribution and trade of detergents and cleaning products.
In addition, the association demands that Lidl remove the product from the shelves immediately and that Aesan arranges the official recall through their channels, as well as a warning and dissemination at European level.