Golf’s Counterfeit Equipment Problem

Counterfeit clubs were recently seized in four separate raids across China.

Carlsbad, California, United States: The US Golf Manufacturers Anti-Counterfeiting Working Group has released findings from a survey that reveals the extent of the problem the golf industry is facing as a result of the production and sale of counterfeit golf equipment.

The survey of golf professionals, players and enthusiasts conducted at the 2023 PGA Show in Florida found that 72% of PGA Professionals know of someone who has either knowingly or unknowingly purchased counterfeit golf equipment.

However, despite 92% of PGA Professionals and 81% of all respondents saying that they recognise counterfeit equipment performs worse than authentic equipment, more than half of all respondents reported previously purchasing golf equipment from non-authorised retailors or online platforms known to sell or promote counterfeit goods.

The survey found that 92% of PGA Professionals bought golf clubs from an authorised retailer during their last purchase.

Concerningly, just 68% of all other respondents (ie. those who weren’t PGA Professionals) said they purchased from authorised retailers, meaning nearly one-third of all respondents – which include individuals enthusiastic enough about golf to attend the PGA Show – could be playing with fake golf equipment.

“This survey shows that even some of the biggest golf fans, players and professionals – those who truly love the game of golf – are running the risk of getting stuck with fake equipment that will hurt their game,” said Jud Hawken, Associate General Counsel, PING.

“Clearly, the counterfeit golf problem continues to be an on-going issue and The Golf Group is dedicated to doing everything we can to educate golfers everywhere about the dangers of counterfeit equipment.

“We encourage all golfers – from pros to amateurs to first-timers – to purchase golf equipment only from authorised retailers to ensure that they are getting authentic products 100% of the time.”

The US Golf Manufacturers Anti-Counterfeiting Working Group has continued to fight counterfeit activity with raid actions each year since its inception in 2004.

In April this year, law enforcement seized more than 44,000 pieces of equipment, apparel and components on a series of four raids conducted in China.

This adds to the Golf Group’s total of more than two million counterfeit products seized by law enforcement over the past nearly two decades.

For information on how to avoid counterfeit golf products, how to report suspected counterfeit golf equipment sellers, and updates on the Golf Group’s efforts to protect golfers, visit and  

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AGIF is a not for profit industry federation with members and partners involved in all facets of the golf industry throughout Asia to assist them to take the next step in development toward a sustainable industry.


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