25 March 2015
In early March, we warned consumers about the Melaton Max subscription trap. The campaign offered consumers two months' worth of a melatonin-based product for sleep disorders for the price of postage, that is, EUR 1. According to an assessment made by the European Consumer Centre Finland, this is a subscription trap that has resulted in consumers receiving products they have not ordered along with unjustified invoices.
The key elements of Lumone Oü's Melaton Max advertisement were and still are:
- two months free
- no commitment to enter into a longer-term agreement
- guaranteed domestic manufacture
- free gift of a Moomin mug for the fastest orders
- a photo of the bottle and the text 'delivery only 1€'.
In reality, however, the company has been selling nine months' worth of the product (270 tablets of Melaton Max). Consumers who contacted the European Consumer Centre Finland said they had not realised this, and could not have been expected to have realised this, as it was not mentioned anywhere on the offer page.
Consumers were not able to cancel their orders, because they had only been able to examine the contents of the delivery by opening the packaging. Most of the consumers said they had not been sent the bottle shown in the advertisement. Instead, they had received a plastic bag whose contents, or the quantity contained therein, could not be determined without opening the bag. However, the company's standard terms and conditions state that consumers may only cancel their order if they return the product with the packaging unopened.
Instructions for consumers
If you have experienced the aforementioned issues with your order, we advise you to send both the company and invoicer a message worded as follows:
I have ordered two months' worth of Melaton Max tablets for the price of postage, that is, EUR 1. When I received the delivery, I opened the package and found that it was not what I had ordered. I consider your contractual stipulation, according to which I am alleged to have committed to receiving EUR 180 worth of product deliveries, to be unanticipated, surprising and harsh, and that as a company, you have done nothing to prevent this erroneous idea from forming. I therefore consider that I am not obligated to pay your invoice of EUR 180. Instead, I will be paying EUR 1 in postage and packaging costs to the specified bank account.
As the delivery I received was not what I ordered, I will not be returning it at my own expense. You may arrange for collection yourself.
We recommend sending this notice of defect to both the seller and the invoicer at:
We also suggest that you include your order number in the notice of defect.
Did you receive a Moomin mug gift and a organic products for free? Did you read the terms of contract? The European Consumer Centre Finland's press release of 3 March 2015.