What a few months it's been... while we remain a small player in the world of interior coatings, word continues to spread about our wonderful paint, and we are enjoying record sales.
However, it seems one of our fellow paint manufacturers (backed up by the British Coatings Federation, of which we are not part) took objection to our claim of being a “100% VOC-free paint” and made a complaint to the Advertising Standards Agency. Well, the egg is on their face because we won. And, so far as we are aware, we are the only paint manufacturer who has been able to make this claim and prove it.
The proof is in the pudding (or the test results)
When the ASA contacted us for information, we provided independent test reports with detailed scientific analysis of our paint which concluded that no VOCs were detected.
We are delighted to say the good people of the ASA accepted that our “100% VOC-free” claim had been substantiated and was not misleading. A victory for the little guys.
(In the interests of openness and honesty, they did pull us up for the use of the phrase “zero emission” on a technicality, but we plan to submit our paint for more specific testing to demonstrate that this claim is also true. Watch this space.)
What’s all the fuss about being 100% VOC-free?
In truth, zero-VOC is possibly of less concern to the vast majority of the general public, who have been using well-marketed “low VOC” paints for years. However, many in the paint industry are getting quite sensitive about this issue since a study linked low-VOC water-based paints to an increased incidence of allergies and asthma in children.
As a result, we see some quite interesting claims being made by other manufacturers… let’s have a look at a couple of our favourites:
The ones that say “there’s no such thing as 100% VOC-free”
We see some paint manufactures, perhaps sensitive about their image, make claims on their website that “there is no such thing as VOC-free paint” and calling such a claim a “marketing tool”.
This stand is backed up by the British Coatings Federation who claim on their website "there is no such thing as a Zero VOC paint", suggesting that such claims are misleading to consumers.
We have proven these claims to be wrong and a 100% VOC-free paint is indeed possible. We therefore hope that the British Coatings Federation will now adjust their stance and instead encourage our fellow paint manufacturers to focus their efforts on making safer, 100% VOC-free products for the benefit of their customers.
The ones that say “100% VOC-free (after fourteen days)”
Another claim we have seen elsewhere is paint that proports to be 100% VOC-free, but in the small print somewhere it says, “after 14-days”!! If ever there is a misleading – and even irresponsible - claim, it’s this one.
We have proven that it is possible to make paint that releases no VOCs from the moment the tin is opened and can see no other sensible use for the phrase “100% VOC-free”.