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Pental fined for ‘flushable’ wipes claims
April 14, 2018

The Federal Court has ordered Pental Limited and Pental Products Pty Ltd (together, Pental) to pay penalties totalling $700,000, for making false and misleading representations about its White King ‘flushable’ toilet and bathroom cleaning wipes.

Pental’s packaging and promotional materials for its White King wipes included statements such as “flushable”, “Simply wipe over the hard surface of the toilet…and just flush away”, and “White King Toilet Wipes are made from a specially designed material, which will disintegrate in the sewage system when flushed, just like toilet paper”.

These proceedings followed a complaint made to the ACCC by the consumer advocate group, Choice which is leading a campaign against Fatbergs that clog sewers. Fatbergs are formed from stuff that shouldn't be flushed down toilets, including congealed fat, wet wipes, nappies and condoms.

Baby Wipes are the wipe product found most frequently in wastewater collection screen studies.  They are the product likely to cause the most consumer confusion, so the INDA (US) and EDANA (Europe) Code of Practice for the labelling of wipes calls for NO baby wipe to be marketed as “Flushable”.

Raising consumer awareness of proper respect for toilets and what can be flushed is a shared objective between the nonwoven industry and Waste Water.

The INDA/EDANA third edition guidance document is a simple framework for providing guidance to assess flushability that can be found at this link: http://www.inda.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/GD3-and-Code-of-Practice_Executive-Summary_June-2013-FINAL.pdf

The statement released by the ACCC can be found at this link: https://www.accc.gov.au/media-release/pental-to-pay-700000-in-penalties-for-%E2%80%98flushable%E2%80%99-wipes-claims