The first time you look at your wardrobe, the first thing you think of is your office clothes.
But in truth, they’re almost certainly a collection of the wrong size.
The problem is that, while the majority of officewear sold in Australia is from reputable brands, some of the worst offenders in terms of quality are also from Australian retailers.
This year, the National Retail Federation (NRF) has put the blame squarely on big brands for what it calls “fraudulent” online shopping.
The report, released this week, found that online retailers were responsible for a whopping 70 per cent of the counterfeit and counterfeiting activity in Australia’s retail sector.
It found the majority, or about 50 per cent, of counterfeit items were found in the UK, while online retailers accounted for around 18 per cent.
“Online retailers are the worst culprits in this regard, not just in Australia, but in many countries around the world,” said NRF CEO and chief executive David Heenan.
The biggest offenders in the report are the iconic brands Adidas, Levi’s and Reebok. “
This means that the retailers are knowingly importing counterfeit goods from the UK and selling them to Australian customers who can’t tell the difference.”
The biggest offenders in the report are the iconic brands Adidas, Levi’s and Reebok.
The latter was found to have produced counterfeit items in more than 100 Australian retail outlets last year.
There were also two other brands that the NRF identified as having significant problems in their retail channels.
They are the flagship brands of Gap, which was found responsible for 40 per cent to 50 per on its website of counterfeit goods.
And Gap’s main competitor, the US-based brand Reebox, was responsible for 60 per cent or more of the overall counterfeiting on its websites.
NRF chairman Richard Geddes said online retailers needed to be held to a higher standard.
“They need to ensure they’re not only importing the goods from trusted suppliers, but they’re also buying the goods that are genuine and they’re doing the tests on them,” he said.
Heenan said the Australian retail industry needed to have a better understanding of how online retailers sell their products.
“In terms of their quality control processes, retailers are in a very vulnerable position in terms to counterfeiters.
They’re not getting the product they need from legitimate suppliers, so the quality issues are really a problem for retailers,” he told ABC News.”
We need to work with retailers and understand the quality controls, so they can really do a better job of identifying counterfeit items and getting them removed.”
He said the NRG’s report highlighted the need for stronger controls on the online marketplace.
But it also highlighted the importance of good-quality retailing in Australia.
You can see more of our stories on the biggest retailers in Australia below: Topics:fashion,business-economics-and-finance,federal-government,consumers-and and-employers,consumer-protection,retail,commerce,australia