The World Customs Organization recently claimed that seven percent of all items traded in the world economy are counterfeit. According to the organization, almost 200 billion dollars per year of counterfeit products will enter the United States each year. Obviously, this creates a tremendous opportunity for consumers to be injured by unsafe and under-regulated consumer items such as tooth paste, children's jewelry, toys, pet food and drugs. Further, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Consumer Product Safety Commission are both under-funded and under-manned, as the federal budget has been stripped to provide tax savings or to fund the war in the middle East.
Experts advise consumers to attempt to protect themselves by use of the "three P trilogy: price, place and packaging". If the price is too good to be true, you aren't getting what you think you are. If you are buying "out of the mainstream", you are at risk. If the packaging looks inferior or unusual in any manner, don't trust the contents.