In the first half of the year, Kaohsiung has issued 86 fines for food advertisements that contain false, misleading, or exaggerated claims, UDN reported.
The fines in the first six months of the year totaled NT$4.28 million (US$139,400), with the maximum penalty of NT$520,000.
The Kaohsiung Department of Health said that it continually monitors advertisements on TV, radio, and in print for false claims. The department investigated 1065 cases between January and June this year, resulting in the 86 penalties. 677 of the advertisements investigated were online, with another 271 appearing on TV.
The Department of Health said that food does not have curative effects. The department noted that most illegal advertisements claim that the food products can aid weight loss, have beautifying properties, or improve organ functions. Some even claim to prevent diseases.
Advertisements making such false or exaggerated claims are in violation of Article 28 of the Act Governing Food Safety and Sanitation (食品安全衛生管理法). Article 28 states, “The labeling, promotion or advertisement of foods, food additives, food cleansers and food utensils, food containers or packaging designated by the central competent authority in a public announcement shall not be false, exaggerated or misleading. Foods shall not be so labeled, promoted or advertised as having medical efficacy.”