all the fakes in our homes

all the fakes in our homes
all the fakes in our homes

The line is sinuous, the tires are wide. The trim is lowered. The muzzle is aggressive. Two dry seats, like a super sports car. On the bonnet the prancing horse. They look like three beautiful Ferraris. They look like him, they are practically the same. Instead they are fake. A yellow 196 Sp, a gray 250 Berlinetta short wheelbase and a white F430 spider. Replicas passed off as real, racing cars that would make any fan’s head spin. They are exhibited at the entrance to the headquarters of the ADM, the Customs and Monopoly Agency, in Rome in Piazza Mastai. Passers-by stop to admire them thinking they are precious pieces, but they are an example of how, to customs experts, nothing escapes. Behind the supercars there is a collection of other products stuck at the border. Seized before they invaded the Italian market. Counterfeiting knows no bounds: perfumes, drinks, toys, food, drugs, clothes, condoms, cell phones, cell phone accessories and even fuel.

The Adm is a dam that blocks the entry into the country of carcinogenic products, harmful to health. Counterfeiting, in these parts, is a synonym for dangerous. The food sector is the most affected. Just think of extra virgin olive oil: containers with seed oil treated with chlorophyll have often been blocked. On the pharmaceutical front, a batch of fake “viagra” was seized, the characteristic blue color was given by the paint used to delimit the parking lots. Or fuels, petrol lengthened with destructive additives even for the most resistant engines such as those of tractors or fishing boats. There are also bottles of champagne with other types of sparkling wine inside.

The data of the Customs Agency photograph a complex reality. In 2020, almost 13 million counterfeit goods were seized at the borders for a value that exceeds seven million euros. These also include a batch of hyena or beaver meat stopped at Fiumicino airport in August 2020 and, to get back to engines, 71 “beautiful” electric Piaggio Vespa’s. This time, all the goods were intercepted in Livorno on 28 September last. They were reproductions of the originals. Selling price 3,000 euros per scooter, on the front of the bike a coat of arms with the tricolor. In short, nothing made in Italy but in China.

And it is precisely from the Dragon that most of the illegal goods come from, as emerges from an Adm report. “Counterfeit products represent 6.8% of EU imports worth 121 billion euros per year and the material comes largely from Beijing and Hong Kong.” “To increase during the pandemic – according to the report – were also counterfeit medicines.” Finally, the data on people scammed: “Almost one in 10 Europeans claimed to have bought counterfeit goods due to misleading information”. In 2019, customs seized 56.8 million kilos of meat (4,297 pieces); 305.6 million fish and crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic invertebrates (51,396 pieces), 19.9 million milk products (3,280 pieces). The food found in passengers’ luggage is seized, thrown in rigid plastic bags, sealed, and then taken to cold rooms located on the runway awaiting disposal / destruction.

The list of goods that an Italian can take home is very long. As well as the risk it takes. Competitive pricing and misleading information are the bait used by fake professionals. Tanning and whitening creams are one example. The Adm blocked a batch that contained hydroquinone as the active ingredient. It is a carcinogenic substance, responsible for the formation of some very serious tumors and skin dermatoses, so much so that in Italy since 2000 its use in cosmetics for the skin has been prohibited and since 2005 also in hair dyes, in any percentage of concentration. . Honey is also the subject of scam, even if it is not counterfeit. In Savona, in June 2020, a game was blocked because it was badly preserved, with hydroxymethylfurfural values ​​higher than allowed. Then there is the chapter of grapes, wine, tomatoes and pomegranates passed off as Italians. Labeled with the tricolor, with indications such as Dop, all reported in great detail to underline its origin. Instead they were products that came from Tunisia, from Egypt. Here the seizures carried out between June and December 2020 are not counted in the order of kilos but of tons.


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