Dear Cuckoo Malaysia Customers

In response to negative allegations made in a recent article(1)by a Korean publication, we would like to take this opportunity to address the allegations in order to clear the confusion it may have created among some of our Cuckoo users.

The article covers two un-related issues, air purifiers containing the antibacterial substance OIT(2) and exaggerated advertising of products.

In relation to the air purifier filters that contain OIT, the Ministry of Environment in Korea has conducted a risk assessment of OIT in air purifier filters and determined that this antibacterial component may pose a health risk. In the interest of public health it has requested that manufacturers of air purifier filters with OIT recall these products, a decision affecting themajority of air purifier manufacturers. (3)

The possibility to be harmful to human health is low. (4)However, in order to alleviate any potential concerns of our Malaysian customers, we have decided to replace all filters by non-OIT filters, free of charge, with immediate effect.At Cuckoo, the health and safety of our customers is our top priority and we are committed to ensuring our customers enjoy our high quality products with peace of mind.

The second allegation made in the article relates to how our water purifiers were advertised on home shopping channels in Korea. In reference to the statement "…The purifier is also promoted on the claim that its filtered water is effective in skincare and curing damaged skin", this exaggerated expressions used during broadcasting prompted the Korea Communications Commission to take disciplinary action against the Home Shopping channel, not against Cuckoo. (5) In compliance with regulations, we had submitted all relevant evidence to the Korea Communications Standard Commission prior to the broadcast and only proceeded with the broadcast upon approval.

All claims made by Cuckoo about our products are verifiable and in compliance with regulations. Withregards to the filter function of Cuckoo water purifiers, minerals such as calcium, magnesium etc. are identified by independent lab tests. (6)Our air purifiers are manufactured in compliance with the Ministry of Environment.

True to our promise of going ‘beyond standards’ in all that we do and in pursuit of our mission to push the boundaries and improve the quality of life of our customers, we are always striving to supply safer and better products and are committed to providing the most accurate information to our customers who have the right to know.


20 July, 2016


CEO of Cuckoo Electronics Co., Ltd.



  1. http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/biz/2016/07/123_209655.html
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isothiazolinone
  3. http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/news/article/article.aspx?aid=3021577
  4. http://koreabizwire.com/air-purifiers-in-spotlight-amid-toxic-substance-controversy/58252
  5. http://www.edaily.co.kr/news/NewsRead.edy?SCD=JE31&newsid=02722406612713864&DCD=A00503&OutLnkChk=Y
  6. Cuckoo Lab Test Report

Action Plan

Step 1: Arrangements have been made to ship the OIT-free filters from Korea immediately.
Step 2: Estimated date of arrival for the OIT-free filters is August 2016. Upon the arrival of the new filters, Cuckoo Natural Doctresses will contact all Cuckoo Air Purifier customers to make an appointment for the filter change.

Step 3: The filter change programme is projected to finish within 2 months.


Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is OIT?

OIT, Octylisothiazolinone, is a chemical substance with antimicrobial and antifouling properties.  It iswidely used to inhibit the growth of bacteria, fungi, and algae in cooling water systems, fuel storage tanks, pulp andpaper mill water treatment systems, oil extraction systems and wood preservation. It is also found in personal care products such as shampoos and other hair care products, as well as certain paint formulations.

In 2014, the Korean Ministry of Environment barred its use in air humidifiers as it may pose a health risk. In an announcement on 20th July 2016, the Ministry extended the ban to air purifier and air conditioning filters as a precaution. This decision by the Ministry is affecting the majority of air purifier manufacturers.


2. Is it safe to use the current Cuckoo Air Purifier?

Yes, it is safe to use the air purifier.

The ban on air purifier filters contain OIT by the Korean Ministry of Environment is a precautionary measure to protect public health.  The risk assessment conducted by the ministry found the possibility to be harmful to human health to be low as the trace amount of OIT detected in the air from air sampling during the tests does not reach an extent to require ongoing study on its potential to be inhaled into the body.

However, in order to alleviate any potential concerns of our Malaysian customers, we will replace all filters by OIT-free filters, free of charge, with immediate effect.


3. How can I request for the filter replacement?

Our Cuckoo Natural Doctress will contact you in August 2016 as soon as the OIT-free filterstock shipment arrives from Korea.


4. If I want to buy an air purifier now, does your new air purifier filter contain OIT?

At Cuckoo, the health and safety of our customers is our top priority and we are committed to ensuring our customers enjoy our high quality products with peace of mind. We are putting all new air purifier installation on hold until we replaced our existing stock with OIT-free filters. We expect to resume new air purifier installation in August 2016.


5. Do I need to bring my air purifier to Cuckoo’s service centre for the filter change?

No, there is no need to do so.Once we receive the OIT-free filters from Korea, our Natural Doctress will make an appointment with you. She will replace the filter for you at your premises.


6. I’m using a different brand of Air Purifier, does it contain OIT?

According to a news report in Korea, the majority of the OIT filters were manufactured by 3M and were used in purification products made by many popular brands.  We suggest you contact your Air Purifier supplier for clarification or refer to the news report for further details by clicking this link.


7. How long should I wait for the filter change?

We target to complete the OIT-free filter replacement within 2 months upon receiving the filters from Korea. The first batch of filters is expected to arrive Malaysia in August 2016.


8. What is the efficacy of the OIT-free filters in inhibiting the growth of mold and bacteria?

Our air purifiers do not depend on OIT filters to inhibit the growth of mold and bacteria. It is our proprietary Cuckoo Plasma Ioniser (CPI) technology that kills bacteria and virus in our air purifiers.