Pest Free’s response to the false and misleading article published in Consumer newsletter 20th July 2018, and in their August/September 2018 magazine.

(1)    This article, written and ‘investigated’ by one Tessa Johnstone claims ‘Pest Free is sold by Plug-In Pest Free (NZ) & claims it’s been scientifically tested & proven’. She makes no mention that the testing Pest Free Australia have is the result of a 2 year, double-blind study that was undertaken in a leading Australian University by an Emeritus Professor of 42 years’ experience. If Tessa had done her due diligence & actually investigated in an unbiased manner, as she should have, she would have found the Emeritus Professor of Zoology & Entomology has personally had over 100 publications & is regarded by the United Nations as being an expert in his field.  His abstract from his testing and a resume of his academic achievements are available here:

Abstract

(2)    She also made no mention that this same full scientific testing of the Pest Free Technology was presented to the Federal Court In Sydney by the Queens Council Barrister who was representing Pest Free against the ACCC. The full scientific testing was accepted by the Federal Court & Pest Free Australia was awarded COSTS against the ACCC, with the Federal Court approving Pest Free Australia could continue advertising it’s proven technology affected rats and mice and aided in the control of cockroaches. (Pest Free is the only chemical-free product in the world to have such Federal Court Approval).

(3)    The ACCC case against Pest Free Australia was dropped because of the undisputed scientific testing Pest Free Australia presented to the Federal Court Sydney, which was also the reason Pest Free Australia can continue to advertise its scientifically proven products technology affects rats and mice and aids in the control of cockroaches.

(4)    The President & owner of Pest Free Australia (Pty) Limited, in 1996 had the foresight to not only have his technology trademarked he also had his technology scientifically tested as he was fully aware the Chemical Pest Control Industry would one day challenge him about his technology. Even though his technology was tested in 1996/7 he placed the results into his safe and he only released the full scientific results in 2002/2004 to the Federal Court in Sydney. It was only after the ACCC case had fully completed, he then began advertising that his chemical-free technology had been scientifically tested.

(5)    The reason why Mr. Connell would not send the scientific testing to Tessa of the Consumer Magazine in New Zealand, was because a competitor selling a Chinese manufactured product in New Zealand by the name of Pestrol had used part of the Pest Free Scientific Testing when challenged by the Commerce Commission about his advertising – claiming his Chinese product operated the same as Pest Free. This was far from the truth and a legal letter was sent to John Fennell, the owner of Pestrol in NZ, advising that legal action would be taken against him if he ever used the Pest Free Scientific Testing to falsely represent this efficacy of the substandard product marketed as ‘Pestrol’ Rodent Free again.  The Commerce Commission are aware of this fraudulent submission and in fact, Mr Fennell and Pestrol have had complaints upheld for false and misleading advertising in the past.  Plug-In Pest Free (NZ) have never been charged, nor asked to change their ads, as the Commerce Commission understood the veracity of the Emeritus Professor’s testing, as did the Federal Court in Sydney.  Sadly, Miss Johnstone and the editors of Consumer Magazine appear incapable of a making the same deductions.

(6)   This article also fails to disclose the fact that the Pest Free Commercial and Pro units also have full HACCP International certification.  Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) is an internationally recognised system used to identify and manage significant food safety hazards and ensure food safety for your business. Pest Free is the only electromagnetic technology that has this certification.

(7)   The article also notes that ‘Pest Management Association of New Zealand executive officer Peter Barry, who’s been in the pest control business for more than 30 years, said the traps were “frowned upon” in the industry’.  We aren’t sure if this sentence was meant to be placed elsewhere in the article – where ‘traps’ were actually being reviewed, but in light of the fact that thousands of Pest Free customers are no longer reliant on costly baits and poisons, thanks to Pest Free driving rodents out of their homes – we have no doubt that they are ‘frowning upon’ Pest Free more and more over time!!  Many traditional pest controllers have been known to unplug Pest Free devices when they are in commercial premises such as restaurants, in an effort to convince owners that the devices are not working.  Fortunately, our customers are aware of this trick and they are quickly plugged back in.  And the one thing we know for sure is this – our customers are most certainly not frowning!

(8)   All of this information was provided to Tessa Johnstone at Consumer.org.nz – and yes, we made it very clear that our scientific data does indeed contain proprietary information.  In light of the many hundreds of substandard products on the market who try to emulate the Pest Free technology, this wisely (as recommended by Pest Free’s Queens Council Barrister) remains under lock and key in Australia.  She was most certainly welcome to visit the Pest Free Head Office and review this data, as HACCP themselves did, and Pest Free are happy to present it if they are legally obliged to do so.  We certainly would not be submitting it to an unprofessional publication that can write and publish the misleading and defamatory nonsense published on their website and in their magazine.  As is clearly indicated on their site (please refer to the very top left corner of their article (attached) they where they ask for ‘donations’.  You can rest assured Pest Free do not pay donations for journalists to write stories about us, though one might be forgiven for suspecting that a competitor might benefit from such misleading information being published about us.  Fortunately, Pest Free Australia (Pty) Ltd has a 25-year reputation internationally, and Plug-In Pest Free has a 13-year reputation since launching Pest Free in New Zealand in 2006.  We are extremely proud to be able to provide New Zealanders with this wonderful product and to have a solid list of long-standing, happy customers who readily refer their friends whenever they have problems with rodents and cockroaches.  Our customers often tell us how much money they are saving in baits and traps, and on vet bills, now that their pets are not consuming toxic poisons in their homes.  And that is a WIN/WIN for us.

If you would like a copy of this misleading article, we have a copy that was sent to us by one of our customers, and will be happy to share it with you.  Please email: michele@pluginpestfree.co.nz