Australia’s baby formula scandal has taken a bizarre twist with a suspected daigou shopper going to unbelievable lengths to prove the authenticity of his product.
When Edgecliff resident Chris and his girlfriend headed out for a weekend coastal walk overlooking Sydney’s picturesque harbour on a hot summer’s day, they knew they were going to come across scores of cameras and selfie sticks.
What they weren’t expecting to see was a glamour shoot for a tin of S26 baby formula.
“My jaw just hit the floor,” Chris told Yahoo7 News.
The IT worker knew then and there that he had to get a photo of his own as he watched a man in his 30s undertake a lengthy photoshoot of a single tin of baby formula.
He said he fully believes the man behind the camera was trying to prove the product was from Sydney to create extra appeal to those desperately purchasing the product back in China.
“I was just going for a wander when old mate with his camera pulled out the can of the S26,” he said.
“I saw him wandering around looking a bit funny… you don’t often see a bloke with a can of S26 trekking around looking for a good angle.
“He just pulled out the camera and started snapping away.”
Chris said while he understands the demand for the product, it doesn’t excuse the current situation facing Australian parents.
“I’ve got friends who are recent parents and they struggle to get baby formula, so it hits close to home,” he said.
“I can understand the plight of those overseas if there is toxic stuff in their formula, but this isn’t on.”
Desperate plan to put an end to baby formula frenzy
With some Chinese immigrants and students reportedly making up to $100,000 a year by shipping Australian formula back home, it’s now commonplace across social media to see frenzied shoppers battling it out for tins of the prized commodity.
From a Christmas Eve swarm on a Coles store, to a brutal raid on Hurstville Woolworths earlier this week, Aussie shoppers have worked to expose the daigou tin army who appear to breach store limits again and again.
However, a solution may be on the way.
A new plan, which will go to supermarket chiefs next month, would see a dedicated register for Australia’s 40,000 daigou which would allow them to place unlimited orders online.
In theory it would give manufacturers firm forecasts on demand and would allow supermarkets to keep their cut, preventing scuffles in the aisles and breaching of the two-tin limit.