CORDILLERAN consumers are not discerning buyers, according to the Department of Trade and Industry.

DTI regional director Myrna Pablo said this might mean consumers are contented with the service or they are not aware of their rights and functions.

In bid to educate the public on their rights as a consumer, the DTI has recently launched the Consumer Welfare Month set on in October with a theme “Consumer Protection: A Shared Responsibility.”

The trade department in the region is teaming up with three other agencies as main components of ConsumerNET, which includes Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, Food and Drugs Administration, Department of Education in connection with other government units during the celebration to conduct extensive educational campaign on consumer rights and responsibilities.

FDA regulation officer III Saturnina Pandosen said their office is willing to help individuals who would like to engage in product sales.

Before getting approval, Pandosen said entrepreneurs are advised to submit product specimens analysis to DTI or other accredited laboratories for studies and takes longer to process and costs P35,000.

Despite that, Pandosen said the FDA helps in facilitating acquisition of proper equipment and facility and provides training for small and medium enterprises.

Meanwhile, as part of their advocacy on informing more consumers, DepEd is set to conduct several information campaigns in schools as part of the Consumers Month.

At the same time, the Commission on Higher education will also conduct a quiz bee and and extemporaneous speech competitions.

An information campaign on proper handling of demonetized bank notes will also be undertaken by the BSP.

BSP La Union Dir. Rogel Joseph del Rosario said all old bank notes launched in 1985 can now only be exchanged in banks or BSP offices until December 2016.

Del Rosario added un-exchanged or un-surrendered money will no longer have monetary value starting January 1,2017 adding dilapidated coins can be exchanged to banks or through BSP with proper documentations, but, emphasized that bank notes without security threads and fake bills surrendered has no more value.

Aside from the month long activities, ConsumerNET also encouraged the public to cooperate with their programs not only during October but all year round.