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Competition Bureau inspects quality marking requirements for gold jewellery

June 30, 2015 — OTTAWA, ON — Competition Bureau

On‑site inspections at a few randomly selected jewellery retailers, manufacturers and importers were conducted in Montreal by the Competition Bureau to ensure that the quality marking on gold articles met the requirements of the Precious Metals Marking Act (PMMA) and its regulations.

Using an X‑Ray fluorescent analyzer, officers from the Bureau tested approximately 200 different gold articles and identified problematic pieces of jewellery. A sample of the problematic articles was sent to a certified laboratory for additional analysis, and four articles were found to be non-compliant with the PMMA and its regulations. The businesses with the non-compliant gold articles cooperated fully with the inspectors, quickly took appropriate actions and voluntarily complied with the Bureau to resolve issues with non-compliant articles in their inventories.

It is not mandatory to mark or advertise a precious metal article for quality — "14K" for gold, for example, or "sterling silver"; however, any mark or advertisement that refers to the quality of a precious metal made of gold, silver, platinum or palladium must abide by the PMMA requirements.

The quality mark must also be accompanied by a trademark that has been applied for or registered with the Registrar of Trademarks in Canada. The Bureau will continue to actively monitor the marketplace to ensure that the information provided to consumers on the quality mark for precious metal articles is not false or misleading.

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The Competition Bureau, as an independent law enforcement agency, ensures that Canadian businesses and consumers prosper in a competitive and innovative marketplace.

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