The Difference Between Grey, Black Market, and Counterfeit Goods

Most consumers come across grey market goods at some point in their lifetime without even realizing it. The grey market is a complex web of distribution channels that are unintended by the original trademark holders or production companies creating the goods in circulation. Products in the grey market may be tempting to purchase due to their low prices and brand name labels, but they lack the same quality and warranties offered by legitimately sold products. Buyers should keep their eyes open for products that fall into any of the following categories:

  • Grey goods are legitimate goods that come from the correct manufacturer, but they are sold through unauthorized channels. While these are not illegal goods, it is important to be wary of them. Sellers who use the grey market will usually sell products that have been improperly discarded due to damage or product recall.
  • Counterfeit goods are phony products that are designed to mimic trademarked products without the consent of the original manufacturer. The products themselves are not illegal, but the way they are marketed is. Often, these goods can be difficult to identify, which is how they go unnoticed in the grey market in the first place.
  • Black market goods are items that are illegal to manufacture or sell. Some black market goods are counterfeit, and some are genuine products that are simply illegal to own or distribute. These are usually a part of a separate, more obscure market than grey goods.

How to Combat the Grey Market

It is easy for people to do their part in keeping products out of the grey market. Individuals and companies alike can prevent used, expired, or recalled goods from entering the grey market by seeking professional product destruction services. Cal Micro Recycling is a certified recycling and product destruction facility that is committed to preserving product integrity and ensuring that all recyclable materials are handled correctly.

For more information about the grey market and product destruction services, please call Cal Micro Recycling at 909.572.1661.

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