An air filter business opportunity, like EcoQuest air filters, may get you into hot water rather than into income and clean air. Be aware of any business opportunity that makes claims that can’t be legally or medically proven, at least if you aren’t an attorney or doctor. Reducing air pollution is important to our health. False claims may be bad for your health. Proceed with caution before getting into any business opportunity.
EcoQuest Intl. is a manufacturer of consumer products headquartered in Greenville, Tenn. EcoQuest is best known for the line of air filtration products that it acquired from Alpine Industries at the time of EcoQuest’s founding in 1999. EcoQuest also makes or markets water purification systems; skin and hair care products; bath and tooth care products; nutrition products; and household cleaners.
But EcoQuest’s principal product is its business opportunity: a multi-level marketing plan in which independent distributors earn commissions on their own sales of products and a portion of commissions earned by other distributors recruited by themselves or their recruits and indirect recruits. EcoQuest’s mission statement discusses the business opportunity first and repeatedly; products are the fifth subtopic mentioned.
Curiously, “EcoQuest has committed that all we do be done for the glory of God” is the sixth subtopic, although no additional explanation is provided. Various reports characterize EcoQuest as an “evangelical Christian business”. Looking at some Web sites of EcoQuest distributors, it appears they espouse “evangelical ecology”, arguing that good stewardship of one’s personal environment — with the aid of EcoQuest products, of course — is God’s Will.
It is debatable whether deceptive advertising is God’s Will, too. EcoQuest and Alpine Industries were the subjects of a 2000 Federal Trade Commission civil action seeking to prohibit unsubstantiated health claims made by the companies and their distributors for their air purification systems. Today, EcoQuest air purifiers bear labels that essentially disclaim any claim that they will do anything:
“University testing demonstrates the ability of EcoQuest’s ActivePure technology to substantially reduce microbial populations on surfaces. Field results may vary based on environmental conditions.”
A Google search for “ecoquest god” (in pursuit of an evangelical Christian connection) yields one high-ranking entry for www.ecoquestblog.com, whose brief Google description reads in part, “God has blessed EcoQuest because it is neighbors helping neighbors.” But the URL does not lead to a blog. Instead, it redirects Web browsers to eBay search results for “ecoquest air purifier” auctions. To paraphrase Albert Einstein, God does not play bait-and-switch with the Universe.
An EcoQuest business opportunity costs approximately $2,500. Convenient financing is available through Best Finance, Inc. — which is owned by EcoQuest founder Michael Jackson (no, not the singer). Through these two companies, Jackson apparently collects interest on loans made to distributors to purchase his products, even after the products are returned to him. Here is what can happen, in the words of former EcoQuest distributor “Ludmilla” in Cote-de-St.-Luc, Quebec:
“When I returned those ($2500 worth of) purifiers in July ’06, which costs me another $99.00, not only the credit was 25 percent less than the price I originally paid, there was an interest charged on the money and in the end the company hired a collection agency also in July ’06 — asking me still for $2,085.29 US despite of the fact that they have their credit for the merchandise and despite of the fact that I already paid $818.15.”
If all this is God’s Will, then He must have a wicked sense of humor. EcoQuest air filters may be fine filters, but they may be at a price more than you are willing to pay.