An IPO report has highlighted Cheetham Hill in Manchester as the UK hotbed for sale and distribution of counterfeit goods.
Counterfeiting is traditionally associated with designers and the clothing market where the dangers of purchasing knock-off items are limited. However increasingly counterfeiting has extended to goods where real safety issues exist surrounding the use of the products.
Items of concern that have made the news include light bulbs which don’t comply with British safety standards and alcohol whose impurities can have potentially life changing side effects.
The most recent items to make the news are hover boards, with Amazon telling customers to throw away the hover boards they purchase in the run up to Christmas over fears that they are prone to catching fire whilst being charged. This was as a result of the electrical components and wiring not being UK compliant.
The IPO has invested in the government funded Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit to assist in dealing with these issues, but is also calling for co-operation from rights holders and brand representation to assist in tackling these persistent problem areas.
Part of Manchester has been nicknamed “Counterfeit Street” because of the widespread sale of fake goods there.
A report by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) said items worth £1m were seized in Cheetham Hill, in 2013.