CEBU CITY – The consumer protection unit of the Department of Trade and Industry-Central Visayas (DTI-7) on Thursday advised lechon business owners to make true to their obligation to deliver the size and quality as promised or agreed upon to avoid complaints that may spoil holiday celebrations.
Joy F. Suralta, division chief of DTI-7’s Consumer Protection Desk, said it is also an obligation for roasted pig traders to deliver based on the agreed time to avoid misunderstandings during the holidays which may result in rants and bad customer reviews on Facebook.
Suralta stressed the power of social media as a means to market products, especially during the holidays, while emphasizing its power to become a platform where unsatisfied customers can rant over business establishments’ failure to meet their expectations.
“We advise lechon traders to deliver as promised or as agreed with their customers, especially on quality and delivery time. It is their means of gaining loyal and repeat customers. Also, customers’ reviews are valuable for the sustainability of any business, word of mouth and now postings on social media are so powerful marketing tools,” Suralta told the Philippine News Agency.
Some netizens posted tirades against small-scale food catering merchants, who used social media to promote their products and services, because of compromised food quality delivered to their customers.
The DTI-7 official urged customers to communicate their complaints straight to the sellers first to give them a chance to rectify their unsatisfactory delivery, though she reminded that “sellers should handle it (the complaint) well.”
“To the buying public, please, when you buy something always ask for a receipt with the specs (specifications) of the product duly indicated. It is your evidence of buying the product from that specific seller. In case of defect/s, the receipt becomes a piece of evidence, with the photos of the product when you file a complaint to the concerned government agency,” Suralta said.
She added that customers may also file a complaint with the local government unit (LGU) if the seller is situated in a local market or “tiangge” or in a proper agency if their grievance involves other products.
Otherwise, the DTI-7’s consumer protection personnel may intervene and subject the complainant and the seller to a mediation proceeding as a first step.
She recalled the case in Carcar City in the southern province of Cebu where the LGU handled the complaints against the erring lechon sellers in their public market.
Her comment came after netizens went to social media to vent their disgust over the delivery of small-sized, deformed, discolored and unproperly cleaned roasted pigs on Christmas Eve, thus spoiling Christmas Day gatherings and parties.