Public Mediation

Emma D vs. Flashdealscreations/Konstantinos Papathanasiou Sofokleous 6 THESSALONIKI, 54633 Greece

Expired seeds sold/false advertising

E. D. vs. Flashdealscreations/Konstantinos Papathanasiou
Sofokleous 6, Thessaloniki, 54633, Greece
Amount Involved: $18.68
    • Status: In Negotiation
      This claim has posted for public comment and negotiation. It will remain posted until resolved to the claimant's satisfaction. Suggest a resolution to help these parties reach a settlement.
      (seeking public comment)
    • Claimant Seeks: View.
    • Claim #: 5899089
    • Amount Involved: 18.68
    • Filed On: May 21, 2020
    • Posted On: Jun 03, 2020
    • Complaint(s):
      • "I just feel ripped off."
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Statement of Claim
Claimant says:
"I bought seeds from FlashDealsCreations / Konstantinos Papathanasiou on Etsy. Once the seeds arrived it was clear they were not as described. The shop advertised "Real Monstera albino seeds" and claimed they were "carefully picked and packaged”. When I got them, they were in a package reading "100 monstera seeds, made in China".

If the seller had obtained a foreign phytosanitary certificate as required by the US Customs and Border Patrol to prevent disease and pests from spreading into the US, I did not see it.

I tried germinating the seeds in multiple ways - sowing them directly in soil, sowing in soil in a moisture chamber, wrapping in damp paper towels, and cold treating the seeds in the refrigerator.

Nothing worked and all methods resulted in mold and disintegrated seeds. When I reached out to the shop owner he implied that I am not a competent enough gardener and said it's not his fault that I “failed to plant them correctly”. When asked how he suggested I plant them, he had no response. Now, getting seeds to germinate does not take a professional, but I happen to be one. I am a professional botanist working in trait pathology at an internationally renowned biotech company, with a degree in horticulture, a degree in plant biology, and 7 years of industry experience. I have never failed to germinate a whole batch of seeds.

The actual seeds were very shriveled and completely black. Monstera seeds should be plump and green as they must be planted very quickly for successful germination. When I told the shop keeper that they appeared too old, he claimed that they are from 2019 production, which is already too old to expect success. After I asked more questions, he stopped replying. I filed a case on paypal but they required me to send the seeds back before I could get a refund. I didn’t feel comfortable with this as most of the seeds are covered in mold--it is illegal and definitely a biohazard.

Anyone shipping seeds to Greece must provide an original Phytosanitary Certificate for shipments of living plants, parts of plants, seeds, and dried leaves. The importer must provide a special license from the Greek Agricultural Ministry. Customs requires phytosanitary inspection in Greece. Obviously these seeds will not be cleared as they are very far from sanitary.

I did not want to have to resort to using outside parties but he will not respond and is clearly expecting me to give up."
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  • 03-15-2020 — First bought seeds
Exhibits View
What Claimant Wants Hide
1. Refund: Seeds Jun 10, 2020 $18.68
Cash total : $18.68
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Awaiting response from Party
Sophie Blythe commented
Sophie Blythe (Comment):
"Of course Flashdealscreations/Konstantinos Papathanasiou should refund the claimant's money, along with an apology. Even good businesses sometimes make mistakes, but only unscrupulous businesses deny those mistakes and refuse to rectify them. I agree with Mr. Maxwell below that U.S. Customs and Border Protection and its Greek equivalent should also be alerted to potential violation of laws designed to prevent the introduction of pests and disease into the environment."
 (8 months ago)

Respondent's Counteroffer

There has been no response to this claim from Flashdealscreations/Konstantinos Papathanasiou. This claim will remain posted until resolved
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  • Contributed Solution: by George Maxwell On 06-05-2020
    Report all three entities to U.S. Customs and Border Protection. FlashDealsCreations / Konstantinos Papathanasiou, Etsy, and PayPal are all being careless and unethical with their sales and customers. More...
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