Fanta is the latest brand investigated by the Romanian watchdog for consumer protection. Romania’s National Authority for Consumer Protection (ANPC) names Fanta beverages among those with double standards. Precisely, the authority claims to have found differences in the quality of the beverages in Romania compared to the same products in Western European countries.
These differences have been well-known for a long time, though. Everything seems to have a different quality in Western countries, from shampoo to beverages and from cars to clothing apparel. Yet, when asked, the Western producers reply that they adapt their quality to the market.
In other words, an Eastern European consumer, compared to an Austrian, doesn’t like his meat can to contain more meat, he likes it with less, apparently. Also, the orange juice – Eastern Europeans prefer it with no orange juice, as we are to listen to the Western companies.
In 2017, Slovakian authorities aimed at this sort of practice of Western companies. As cited by Reuters, half of 22 products bought in Bratislava, the Slovak capital, and two Austrian towns across the border, less than 20 km (13 miles) away, differed in taste, looks and composition, the Slovak ministry said, according to laboratory tests by the national food quality watchdog.
In 2017, the Romanian authorities, inspired by Slovakia, did similar tests and found the same results – the quality of the products is inferior in Romania compared to Western Europe, even if the same brands delivered the products.
In 2019 it appeared that Eastern European consumers had their voices heard. The almighty European Commission decreed that from then on, there wouldn’t be double standards any longer. Or the guilty company would pay up to 4% of its annual income. It appears the situation is quite the same, if not even worse.
Such investigations should definitely continue, and Fanta is just one of the way too many Western companies to have their products checked for double standards.