NSF International has obtained a permanent injunction against Parson Adhesives, a Rochester Hills, Mich. company that distributes adhesives for use in drinking water products. NSF International filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan against the company for certification mark infringement. The parties settled the lawsuit on August 25, 2011.
According to NSF, Parson Adhesives admitted it falsely represented some of its products as being NSF-certified and that it willfully infringed the NSF mark in the marketing and sales of its adhesives for use in drinking water products.
At one time Parson Adhesives had products certified by NSF International to NSF/ANSI Standard 61: Drinking Water System Components-Health Effects, which addresses material safety for drinking water uses. All of these products (e.g. Sonlock 3638, 3243, 3271 and 3565 and Copper Seal) have since been dropped from NSF certification. Parson Adhesives continued to claim that these products were NSF-certified even after repeated demands from NSF to cease and desist, NSF claimed.
According to NSF, Parson Adhesives’ admission of liability and the court’s issuance of a permanent injunction protects against infringement of the NSF mark, which can be found on more than 360,000 water, food and dietary supplement and consumer products in more than 150 countries.
“The primary function of NSF’s drinking water certification programs is to protect the public water supply all the way from the source to the tap,” said Pierre Sbabo, vice president, NSF International Water Programs, in a prepared statement. “As an independent product testing and certification organization, we have made it our responsibility to maintain strict surveillance programs to assure that only products that earn NSF certification are authorized to display the NSF mark.”
According to NSF, in addition to admitting liability, Parson Adhesives agreed to other key terms and conditions of the settlement, some of which include payment of NSF’s legal fees, costs and other expenses, and complete indemnification of NSF by Parson Adhesives.
Additional information on NSF Certification Enforcement Actions can be found on NSF’s website at nsf.org/regulatory/newsroom/cea.asp.