The French industry association Union des Fabricants (UNIFAB) is harnessing the vacation season to launch a comprehensive anti-counterfeiting education and awareness campaign. The association, which represents more than 200 companies and professional bodies from all sectors, is thus raising awareness of the potential dangers of counterfeit products during July and August. The new campaign was launched in early July in Cannes, in the south of France. Activities will take place both online and on-site, for example on beaches and at markets in southern parts of France.
The communications campaign is running under the slogan “Mauvaise surprise, ces produits sont dangereux: la contrefaçon c’est bidon!“ (roughly: “Bad surprise, these products are dangerous: counterfeit is not real!”). The aim is to encourage consumers and the public in France to shop more carefully – whether offline or online – and not to be fooled by counterfeit products.
Key pieces of the campaign are ten different visuals representing various industries, which will be displayed on around 300 city advertising panels and at airports, for example. Online, partnerships with eBay, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Google will be used to draw attention to the numerous risks posed by counterfeit products. In addition, more than 150,000 flyers and giveaways are to be distributed to summer vacationers by the end of August – the activities will take place in Cannes, Nice, Saint Tropez, Antibes, Marseille, Aix‑en‑Provence, Biarritz, and Saint‑Jean‑de‑Luz, among other places.
Launching the campaign, UNIFAB also highlighted the scale of the illegal trade in counterfeit goods in France. According to that, the French economy suffers annual losses of around 6.7 billion euros, and more than 38,000 jobs are lost. In 2022 alone, French customs intercepted around 11.5 million counterfeit products, it said. France’s customs had already recorded a dramatic increase in intercepted counterfeits in 2021: Back then, customs officers in France confiscated around 9.1 million counterfeits, at that time a massive increase of 62% compared to the previous year.
The campaign was presented by UNIFAB together with cooperation partners such as the French Patent and Trademark Office (INPI) and the comité national anti‑contrefaçon (CNAC). In addition, the awareness campaign was organized in cooperation with customs and the gendarmerie.