Festival faults: Food, clothing top complaint list

The Shanghai Administration for Market Regulation received 799 complaints and tip-offs during the Dragon Boat Festival holiday, a rise of 17 percent from the same period last year.

Catering and accommodation, food and clothing were among the sectors that drew the largest number of complaints during the three-day Dragon Boat Festival holiday, the city's market watchdog said on Sunday.

The Shanghai Administration for Market Regulation received 799 complaints and tip-offs during the just-concluded holiday, a rise of 17 percent from the same period last year.

Among them, 124 were regarding food, an increase of 18 percent.

These involved quality problems, substandard packaging and fake discounts, the administration said.

There were 18 complaints about zongzi (glutinous rice dumpling), a festival delicacy, with quality problem and coupon use drawing the most ire, according to the administration.

A consumer said that there was no product when he tried to redeem a voucher, while another said a system problem mistakenly led to the coupon's expiry when he used it online.

A resident who bought zongzi from a local supermarket complained that the color of the reed leaves faded after washing. The customer suspected it contained illegal additives and asked for an investigation, the administration said.

Another 176 complaints were related to catering and accommodation, a rise of 21 percent from the same period last year.

Smoke control at catering businesses, poor sanitary conditions, food quality, pricing scams and contract disputes topped the list, the administration said.

A consumer said a hotel room she booked online did not have a table and a sofa as claimed in the hotel's website promotion.

There were 43 complaints concerning clothing, shoes and caps, and 33 complaints regarding home furnishings, a surge of 32 percent and 18 percent, respectively. Gripes about poor after-sales services accounted for 56 percent, followed by quality flaws, unmatched price and quality and pricing scams, according to the administration.

A resident said she bought a handbag priced at more than 2,200 yuan (US$318) on a website but the real product did not match the promotion's claims. When she asked for a refund, her demand was refused.

The complaints are being handled by district market watchdogs and consumer councils, the administration revealed.

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