Shonky Awards 2013 Names and Shames Top 8 Dodgiest Products in Australia

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By Athena Yenko | October 30, 2013 11:54 AM EST

Choice's Shonky Awards of 2013 had named and shamed Australia's top dodgiest products.

"The CHOICE Shonky Awards shine a spotlight on products and services that are sneaky, slippery, unscrupulous and sometimes unsafe. The risk of receiving an infamous Shonky encourages businesses to lift their game and put consumers first. This year we had a record 439 Shonky nominations from across Australia, which highlights the level of consumer concern about shonky products and services," stated  CHOICE Chief Executive Alan Kirkland.

"We hope the Shonky's encourage consumers to look critically at the goods and services they use, and question poor service, hidden costs, and the fine print beneath claims that seem too good to be true," Mr Kirkland added.

"We'd really like to see businesses in Australia lift their game. No Shonky's would be a fantastic situation, but we're a long way off that," Mr Kirkland told AAP.

For Shonky Awards 2013, the Dairy Farmers Oats Express Liquid Breakfast, Banana and Honey topped the eight "winning" products for misleading its consumers of eating "blend of milk, oat fibre and real banana." Well, according to Choice's ingredients panel, the company used banana extract and there was no honey in it.

Second on the list was Nuk Starlight Silicone Orthodontic Soother for babies age 0-6 months for failing yet again to meet the voluntary Australian Standard. The company had already been in the Shonky's list in 2012 for exactly the same reason.

Third on the list is Credit Repair Australia for compelling customers to pay a non-refundable upfront fee of $990 for its unsatisfactory service. Most customers reported having their credit history not erased from a report unless it is proven wrong.

Ecoeggs landed fourth for claiming "free range" stocking density of birds while cramming all 20,000 birds per hectare. The national model code requires only 1,500 birds per hectare.

Kleenex Mansize Tissues landed fifth for falsely advertising their Mansize tissue as "big tissue, small box" while Choice found out that the tissue were now 14 per cent smaller than before.

At number six was Energy Australia for not disclosing increasing bill before sending out bills to its customers. They did inform their customers about price increase but remained discreet on exactly how much.

EA gaming business for SimCity was at number seven for unfairly charging Australian customers $2.48 a minute when calling their customer service headline to seek help for server connection issues.

At number eight was Qantas Frequent Flyer Toolbar for monitoring all Internet searching activities of customers. The toolbar can gather all data from its customers while they give poor travel rewards.

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