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As per the Gamp's Law, a wizard can not create good food out of thin air BUT (s)he can multiply the food if it is available. We have seen many examples of such incidents where the food multiplication was used as per the plot convenience. For instance in year 2 when Harry and Ron were being reprimanded for flying the car and McGonagall told the duo to have sandwiches and pumpkin juice while they were in the Snape's Dungeons. The sandwich platter and juice jug kept on refilling till the boys were done.

Now one can say that McGongall simply charmed the platter and jug to fetch the sandwiches and juice from the kitchen and they were not created out of thin air. Though it was not mentioned in the book, a fair point and can be considered. But in year 6, when Aragog died, Harry kept on refilling the Wine bottles brought by Slughorn so that he should reach a vulnerable state and then can be tricked to share the Horcrux memory. In this case, Harry clearly wasn't fetching wine from anywhere. He was conjuring it out of thin air.

Now my question is why this practice is not abused? Why not buy couple of chocolate frogs and then keep on multiplying them at your wish? Why not buy one box of Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans and then keep on multiplying the beans at your wish? Why the Weasleys Wizard's products (puking pasties and nosebleed nuggets etc.) were not purchased just once and then multipled again and again? There are so many opportunities for wizards to multiply things, not just food, and then use them as per their will/leisure - why this is not done?

One more important point is that Why wizards don't use this trick to get filthy rich - in a legal way I am not talking about multiplying Galleons, although, this can be debated as other non living things are multiplied then why not galleons. But this has been discussed before although I didn't find the arguments that strong. But this is for later.

My idea is that let's take the situation of the Weasleys. We all know that weasleys are poor (I don't know why as they are wizards and can multiply things magically), nevertheless, a simple scam could be to meet a Muggle family having a wizard kid (Hermione is a good option). Now weasleys can multiply food and other elements magically, why not multiply a sack of wheat/rice or a bottle of wine or juice and then give the containers of these items to Muggle family who can sell these items in the muggle world, as regular seller, get money, pay taxes to the muggle govt and then share the rest of money among themselves?

In book 1, Hermione parents were exchanging the muggle money into authentic wizard money from Gringotts. Why not Weasleys (or any other muggle family involved in this LEGAL scam) use their share to get it changed into Galleons and then get filthy rich in a matter of days?

closed as primarily opinion-based by Himarm, Jason Baker, BMWurm, Shevliaskovic, Matt Gutting Dec 3 '15 at 20:32

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 3
    Anti-duplication Charms. NEXT. – DavidS Dec 3 '15 at 11:24
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    Not on Wheat/Rice and Wine/Juices? Why not scam and get Galleons and get unlimited supply of Anti-duplication charmed objects? Your turn :) – Harsimrat Dec 3 '15 at 11:26
  • If you tried building such a Wizard-Muggle-Food-Chain operation, do you honestly think the Ministry would let you get through with that? Consider the fact how huge the Ministry is, compared to the comparatively marginal wizarding population. They have more than enough people working in the place who need something to do or get bored really quick. Noone can be that inefficient, not even government officials, that a wizarding population of a few thousand need more than a few dozen people governing them. Since there are hundreds and hundreds working there, they look out for things like your plan. – BMWurm Dec 3 '15 at 11:43
  • @BMWurm - Minisitry can't track everything that is going on in the wizards dwells. A proficient wizard can find means to create a vicinity (charms, hexes and spells) where these intrusions can be checked and then work can be done. Moreover, I am not asking to have this Food Chain to run for ages. In my case, I can have 100's of such containers created and then shipped in the muggle world overnight, with the help of my Muggle friend and then can exchange the muggle money at the regular intervals. I don't want to continue this business - Its just a one time Scam. – Harsimrat Dec 3 '15 at 12:01
  • @Harsimrat So essentially you want to do a one time money laundering operation. As your local mob boss could tell you, that is not as easy as it looks. If you suddenly walk into Gringotts with a million pounds and want them traded into Galleons, people will ask where you got all that money from... after all, the ministry has to keep the Statute of Secrecy (and at least check you didn't just apparate into a (muggle) bank vault and stole it). So you would need a good explanation, or you would have to change the money in small parts over time. Working would probably earn you the same money faster – BMWurm Dec 3 '15 at 12:20
2

It is clearly mentioned in book that all food is Hogwarts is made in kitchen by the elves, and then simply magicked up to plates / glass / etc.

As for Harry getting Slughorn drunk, Harry is simply refilling Slughorn's glass from the wine bottle they started the toast with.

Sorry, im not at home yet so cant provide extracts from books.

As for your question why this practice is not abused? the answer is because they are actually bound by almost similar rules like us in real world, which basically is that you cant just create energy out of nothing.

EDIT: In response to OP's comment, to clarify, it is not possible to multiply items which cannot be created out of thin air in the first place. So if we take food, its not possible to have one pizza and then multiply into two pizzas, because this second pizza would then break Gamp's law. And, if I am not wrong, this is never mentioned directly or indirectly happening in books (Not that there are no goof up's in HP).

EDIT 2: I now realize you might be referring to the lines you can increase the quantity if you’ve already got some and it can be multiplied if one already has some food to multiply, it can be enlarged or the food can be summoned if one knows the approximate location and is fairly sure the food will still be there from wiki on gamp's law

I agree I didn't really attend to this issue till now.

Consider this, to have some food in the first place, you must have had some raw materials. So you would probably have to cast some convert raw material to end product charm. Maybe then after this you can cast a multiplication charm, but which would then consume more raw materials, but save you from having to cast the convert raw material to end product charm multiple times?

Sorry, this is just my understanding, and maybe I think JKR could have had better wording when making the laws of her universe!

Although, I think you might be onto something if you go with the wording it can be enlarged. Think of having 10 tons of steel, and casting an enlarging charm on it. Does it work like that? Not sure.

I believe this question (How can McGonagall make sandwiches appear?) is also related

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    This is precisely what I have written in my question. It is not possible to create anything out of thin air but IT IS POSSIBLE to multiply it. Gamp's Law is a legal proof of this statement. I am not asking to create anything out of thin air here, I am just asking why the MULTIPLICATION factor can't be used for the benefit of the wizards personal gains? – Harsimrat Dec 3 '15 at 11:57
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    Because improper use of magic. – CandiedMango Dec 3 '15 at 12:06

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