New website provides consumers with information on quality hallmarks
"To provide an insight into the reliability of quality hallmarks": this, according to State Secretary Heemskerk, is the aim of the new quality hallmark website, which was introduced on 2 April 2008 and can be accessed at www.consuwijzer.nl, the government's consumer information desk. Heemskerk has just launched the website at the Ministry of Economic Affairs.
Quality hallmarks can apply to feature on the website. The idea behind this is that every self-respecting quality hallmark will want to appear on the site. With around 40 registered quality hallmarks, the initiative has got off to a successful start. Examples of quality hallmarks that already feature on the site include the KEMA quality mark, the environmental label, the EKO label and the free-range egg quality hallmark. The website enables consumers to easily check what these quality hallmarks stand for, how reliable they are and how this is tested.
The new website is one of the measures introduced by Mr. Heemskerk in order to raise the level of transparency for consumers with regard to quality hallmarks, as well as to increase the reliability of such hallmarks. In addition, once the 'Unscrupulous Commercial Practices' legislative proposal has entered into force, the Consumer Authority will be able to take action against quality hallmarks that falsely claim to meet certain criteria, as well as against companies that carry a quality hallmark without permission. The Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority [Voedsel en Waren Autoriteit] is already able to take action against false health claims on food products.
The Quality Hallmark site has been developed in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality and the Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment.