Osmose® Files Lawsuit to Stop Viance’s False Media Campaign
For Immediate Release
March 4, 2009
Griffin, Ga., March 4 – On March 3, Osmose, Inc. filed a complaint in the United States District Court, Northern District of Georgia, to stop Charlotte-based Viance, LLC from continuing its negative public relations campaign intended to scare users of treated wood. According to Osmose, the Viance media campaign falsely attacks the effectiveness and safety of wood treated with micronized copper wood preservatives.
Osmose is the leading worldwide supplier of wood preservatives used to protect wood in outdoor environments against fungal decay and termite attack. Since 1934, Osmose has produced high quality, thoroughly tested, reliable wood preservatives, including its advanced MicroPro® system, which is a micronized copper preservative technology.
“We filed this lawsuit to protect the integrity of our company, the quality of our products and the credibility of the treated wood industry,” said Paul Goydan, president of Osmose. “We intend to put a stop to Viance’s mischaracterizations and unfounded attacks.”
Micronized copper-treated wood products have been and continue to be evaluated at test sites around the world. A comprehensive scientific study published in the November 2008 edition of Forest Products Journal, a leading industry publication, confirmed micronized copper-treated wood products excel in protecting wood from fungal decay and termite attack.
“Viance’s marketing campaign is desperate, deceptive, and damaging to the entire treated wood industry, including preservative manufacturers, wood treatment companies, distributors, retailers and contractors,” said Goydan. “Extensive field testing and international industry experts have confirmed that micronized copper technology is grounded in sound science and provides effective wood protection against fungal decay and termite attack.”
Recently, an open letter to Viance was endorsed by 17 of the largest wood treating companies in the U.S. expressing concern “about the negative impact this campaign is having on our industry.” The letter also states that “this is not about competition; this is about a self-serving marketing crusade that threatens the reputation and questions the integrity of the entire industry.”
In a press release dated Feb. 9, 2009, Viance stated that it hired Timber Products Inspection (TP) to evaluate micronized copper-treated wood posts. In the release, Viance made allegations that a handful of micronized copper-treated wood posts were showing signs of premature decay and implied that TP’s test results confirmed its allegations. Viance used these results as the basis for its false, misleading and disparaging statements about the safety and performance of micronized copper-treated wood.
However, on Feb. 12, TP published an open letter to the industry in which it stated that the results contained in its report did not necessarily reflect scientific random sampling, and that there is a subjective element to the grading in the report. Therefore, the tests “should not necessarily be viewed as a representative sample of MCQ posts in use at this time in the United States.” No conclusions regarding the safety and durability of micronized copper-treated wood should be taken from the findings in TP’s report to Viance.
After publishing its open letter to the industry, TP has stated, “the work TP has performed for Viance regarding the inspection and evaluation of micronized treated wood and MCQ does not provide a basis for retailers, builders, contractors and homeowners to be concerned about the performance and durability of MicroPro treated wood products.” As a result, to further distance itself from Viance, TP will no longer conduct future treated post inspections for Viance.
To view the TP industry letter, the open letter from the wood treating companies and additional information regarding Osmose’s MicroPro system and the safety, reliability, environmental integrity and superior performance of micronized copper technology, please visit www.treatedwoodtruth.com.