The Swedish Market Court has in three recent decisions discussed what constitutes a misleading and unfair statement under the Swedish Marketing Act (2008:486).
One of the cases (MD 2013:16) addressed the statement “Där bättre produkter kostar mindre” (literally “Where better products cost less”) used by Bauhaus & Co Kommanditbolag (“Bauhaus”). The Court stated that an evaluation on whether a statement is misleading and unfair is based on the notion of how an average consumer would perceive the statement. The target group for Bauhaus was deemed to be wide and the average consumer was considered to lack any deeper knowledge regarding price and supply offered by different market participants. Conclusively, the Court held that the statement was considered to be misleading and unfair and Bauhaus was prohibited to use the statement, or similar, when marketing its products.
Another similar case (MD 2013:17) where the Court came to the same conclusion involved the statement “Bäst och Billigast” (literarily “Best and Cheapest”) used by the company Bäst och Billigast i Sverige AB when marketing windows and doors. According to the Court this statement was consider to be a claim that their products were the best and cheapest available on the market and therefore the statement was considered to be misleading and unfair.
In a third case (MD 2013:15), Genilab of Scandinavia AB and A-C.N., marketed a suit called SlimVest stating that the use of this product would bring health benefits such as weight loss and detox effects. With reference to previous decisions the Court stated that there are particularly high requirements of responsibility concerning products claiming weight loss. As no facts to support the statement had been provided, the Court concluded that the statement was misleading and unfair.