Logo failureNew logo for traders is failure

05 October 2005

Which? has poured scorn on a new logo which claims to allow consumers to buy with confidence.

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) says the new logo will show consumers which businesses are committed to delivering the highest standards of service.

Anyone displaying the logo will have signed up to an OFT approved consumer code of practice.

But Which? believes the OFT has missed a golden opportunity. Principal Policy Researcher Malcolm Bassett said:'We supported the concept of the OFT's approval regime for codes of practice. On paper the criteria were tough and only those codes which really made a difference to consumers could be expected to pass. Unfortunately the OFT has failed to apply its own high criteria.

'In particular it promised robust monitoring of scheme members and disciplinary procedures for those that step out of line. Instead it's given its tick to schemes which we consider do neither.'

The logo scheme will apply to a wide range of products and services from package holidays to homes, car warranties, car body work repairs and goods bought at home.

To date the Association of British Travel Agents(ABTA), Ombudsman for Estate Agents (OEA), Direct Selling Association (DSA), Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and the Vehicle Builders and Repairers Association(VBRA) have secured OFT approval for their codes.