After five years of legal wrangling, Scent-Lok announced this week that it has claimed victory and won a dismissal of all lawsuits challenging the effectiveness of its activated carbon scent-elimination clothing. The Scent-Lok news release and a link to the final court document can be found below.
On a personal note, I'd just like to say that I am always amazed when I run into a fellow hunter who swears activated carbon doesn't work, because clearly it does. Now, I am not saying that using activated carbon clothing -- or any scent-elimination technology, for that matter -- completely eliminates 100 percent of your human odor. But I am saying that anyone who thinks activated carbon doesn't adsorb odors has obviously never used it. Actually, you can do some pretty simple experiments at home using activated carbon powder that can be dissolved in water. Just take a smelly piece of clothing, soak it in the water with activated carbon and hang it out to dry. I guarantee it will smell like nothing when it's dry. I use this method to take the "new" smell out of items such as safety harnesses and other gear.
The activated carbon used in Scent-Lok clothing operates on the same principle, only the carbon is bonded to the fabric in the clothing. As the company notes in the press release and court document, the legal process produced a variety of information offering examples of activated carbon's effectiveness at eliminating odor, which is why it has been used for decades in numerous odor-control efforts across a number of industries.
As a disclaimer, I am not promoting Scent-Lok or any other company's products. I am just pointing out, as an experienced big-game hunter, that activated carbon is one of a number of effective scent-elimination technologies available to us. I can tell you from personal experience that the more you can control your scent, the better, and while I am not sure any technology is a magic bullet, I do believe hunters who pay attention to personal hygiene and take advantage of a combination of scent-control products available to them can significantly improve their odds of getting within bow range of critters in the field.
Here's the Scent-Lok news release:
SCENT-LOK® OBTAINS GLOBAL VICTORY IN NINE LAWSUITS CHALLENGING CARBON HUNTING CLOTHING
ALS Enterprises, Inc., the maker of Scent-Lok® odor reducing carbon hunting apparel, has obtained a complete victory in the nine federal lawsuits that challenged Scent-Lok®'s ability to control human odor. After over five years of litigation, plaintiffs have agreed to take nothing and dismiss all of the pending lawsuits with prejudice. The final straw for plaintiffs was the district court's August 17, 2012 Order dismissing the first-filed Minnesota case. In that Order, the district court noted the extent to which these lawsuits were lawyer-driven: "the Court is firmly convinced that 'this litigation is so feeble that it is best to end it immediately,' as its 'only goal . . . appears to be fees for the plaintiffs' lawyers.' Indeed, it would simply ignore reality to believe that this case is about anything other than fees at this juncture, given the small number of Plaintiffs and the paltry damages they could recover if they were to prevail. There exists no perceptible public benefit."
Less than a week later, plaintiffs agreed to end the eight other lawsuits as well. As explained in the final stipulation of dismissal, a copy of which is attached, Scent-Lok® products give hunters a real advantage:
'¢ "Expert testing found that, using highly elevated test odor concentrations that were 'likely a ten thousand fold greater than a human body could produce in the course of 24 hours,' Scent-Lok® carbon hunting clothing fabrics blocked 96-99% of the odor compounds, and essentially 100% of the surrogate body odor compounds tested."
'¢ As exemplified by the test results below, Scent-Lok® carbon hunting clothing fabrics dramatically outperformed non-carbon fabrics at blocking odor permeation in head-to-head testing:
'¢ "Expert testing also found that after drying, or washing and drying, Scent-Lok® carbon fabrics continue to be highly effective at blocking odor permeation."
Greg Sesselmann, Scent-Lok®'s president and the inventor of carbon hunting clothing, commented: "We are gratified and vindicated by our win in these nine lawsuits. It gives me great satisfaction that Scent-Lok® products were shown without question to be highly effective at reducing odors, which allows hunters to get close to wildlife and experience the beauty of nature like never before. It saddens me to think that plaintiffs and their lawyers are allowed to use the legal system to bring groundless lawsuits against companies like ours."
"Our customer satisfaction level is extremely high, based on survey evidence and unsolicited testimonials from hunters, because Scent-Lok® products work unbelievably well," Sesselmann remarked. "Customers don't need an attorney to get total satisfaction from Scent-Lok®; our products come with an unconditional satisfaction guarantee. On behalf of our consumers and retail partners, we remain focused on making products for the best hunting experience in the world."
Here's a link to the court document:
Scent-Lok Court Stipulation