Why Nigerians are talking about counterfeit products


I once saw a post on X (Twitter) by popular storyteller Victor Fatanmi that requested Netflix buy the rights to Nigeria for its entertainment purposes. With each passing day, I couldn’t help but agree more with Fatanmi.


From imaginary snakes swallowing N36 million to the EFCC arresting military officers for cybercrime fraud (aka Yahoo), there are a lot of headlines in the news that are too bewildering to be true. You could only imagine that these scenarios would be acted out in sitcoms and not in real life.


This brings me to the headline of today – the shocking amount of counterfeit products in Nigeria. 


‘Amoys Sauce,’ ‘Vaseina,’ and other shocking counterfeit products

The conversation started with an X user, @AimalOhi, lamenting the different variations of Amoy Sauce in the market and the menace of fake products in Nigeria.



Instantly, many other users were able to relate to buying more fake variations than the original in reputable supermarkets. It laid the foundation for more people to share their stories about other fake products that they had purchased.









The ‘3 Ps and an S’ required for fake product detection


In order not to be like these users, here are four ways in which a consumer can’stay ‘stay woke’ and detect fake products:



Dear Nigerians, please take note of packaging errors when buying goods. If the spelling, shape, or even the design of the product is wrong, then it’s definitely a fake product. 


Also, look out for the seal. If it’s broken or impacted, then it’s fake. You also need a bar code scanner app on your phone to detect if the bar codes on the product are fake or not. 




Cheap products don’t always translate to good products. 


If the price is too good to be true, then we are more than certain that the product is likely to be an imitation of the original or a fake. This usually happens in the case of luxury items. 




If the supermarket or retailer is not licensed by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and the Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON), then there is no need to think twice. The products sold are most likely to be fakes.




For products such as nail polish, always try to smell the product. If a bad odour emanates, then it’s certainly fake



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