Do your research, know who you are buying from…otherwise, you could be taken to the cleaners! PLEASE, take the time to read the alarming information below, that THEY don’t want you to know…..
Okuma’s President, Stormy Brettmann-Skogg, says: “Buyer Beware of Internet Scams!”
Okuma Nutritionals, LLC was the first company to bring Wu-Long Premium Chinese Slimming Tea to the U.S. market in 2005. Since that year, we are proud to say that over 400,000 people have enjoyed the taste and health benefits of our authentic Wu-Long brand tea.
Okuma has always taken pride in the quality of our Wu-Long Tea brand and in the service we provide our customers. When demand for the product increased at a rapid rate, we went back to our growers in China and increased production, while always preserving the quality and process.
The Downside of Success
The success of our Wu-Long tea and our rapid growth came with a cost. While the Internet has grown in wonderful ways, it has also opened the door for hundreds of thousands of companies preying on people through Internet scams.
Since weight loss is a multi-billion dollar industry, it was only a matter of time before copycat companies appeared to deceive people out of their hard earned money. Not only are unsolicited spam emails from companies annoying, they present false information, touting the amazing (but usually unsubstantiated) health benefits of weight loss products – and often failing to mention the potential side-effects.
A number of companies have realized Okuma’s brand of all-natural Wu-Long Slimming Tea was seeing success, helping people lose weight and stay healthy, and have since jumped on the bandwagon.
The M.O. of these companies is to launch websites that appear to be the original wulongforlife.com website by copying our website’s content, including our 100% real customer testimonials, then pasting this information on their own website and begin taking online orders.
We’ve found that the imitation doesn’t stop with the website, but that a number of companies have been obtaining lower grade oolong tea, leading customers to believe it is the Okuma brand of quality Wu-Long Tea, and then selling it at a substantial mark-up.
Okuma coined the name Wu-Long when we launched our company in 2005, and we are in the process of working to protect the trade name and the brand we built. We have taken legal action against a number of fraudulent companies as well who are not only deceiving the public but are tainting our good name and reputation.
While this takes place, the abundance of copycats out there (and their ability to keep their identity secret on the internet, or to switch websites quickly) is making that difficult. For now, I just want to stress that if you hear your friend or neighbor talking about Wu-Long tea – odds are they are talking about us. We were the first to bring you this tea. We coined the name and built the brand. We have proudly served over 400,000 customers. None of our competitors even come close.
Ensuring Our Customers Aren’t Deceived
Internet scams have taken millions of dollars from the pockets of many people, and the best way to avoid being taken is to become educated so you know what to avoid.
Okuma also wants to spread this information so that you are able to discover the wonderful health benefits our brand of oolong tea has to offer, and won’t be turned off by the purchase of lesser quality, imposter teas available online.
Our company welcomes healthy competition and we are confident that our high-quality tea, our commitment to customer service, our longstanding reputation, and our huge customer base will allow our company to enjoy continued growth, which includes the introduction of new products to the market.
However, to protect you the consumer and to help keep our good reputation intact, we wanted to inform you about the conduct of some of the companies that have questionable business practices, and the consumer has paid the price. Okuma believes it is important to pass along our experiences with these companies so consumers can make an informed decision as to where to purchase their tea.
Thank you for reviewing this information and staying informed. We at Okuma believe that anyone taking a hard look at what has been presented will ultimately decide to purchase high-quality Wu-Long Premium Chinese Slimming Tea from Okuma. We encourage you to look around, and of course email us with any questions you might have.
Please know that Okuma Nutritionals takes pride in our level of customer service and we do everything we can to ensure an easy and satisfying buying experience; one that also includes satisfaction with our product through our money-back guarantee. We hope this information helps to resolve any confusion with other companies claiming to sell Okuma’s Wu-Long Premium Chinese Slimming Tea.
On behalf of the entire Okuma family, we wish you the best in health and life,
FACT: Since 2005, Okuma Nutritionals, LLC has delivered in excess of ONE MILLION boxes and/or bags of product to its Premium Wu-Long Tea customers!
DID YOU KNOW…
Jesse Willms, owner of several tea/weight loss/diet websites (one being easyweightloss.com) has settled multiple lawsuits for $Millions of dollars, for stealing others products? See other websites and additional facts below one the homepage snapshots shown below.
Wu-YiSource.com (formerly wulongsource.com, also operating websites at oprahsdietsecret.com, myeasyweightlosstea.com, wu-yitea.free-trialoffers.com, and possibly others) is owned and operated by a man named Jesse Willms (he sometimes spells it Jesse Williams).
Mr. Willms’ company states its headquartered is located in Las Vegas, Nevada, but to date, that cannot be confirmed. The company also has an office in Billings, Montana, which in actuality, is a P.O. Box located at a UPS store. To our knowledge, Mr. Willms lives in Canada.
Another Jesse Willms company, eDirectSoftware, has been sued by both Microsoft and Symantec for selling stolen and/or pirated software. See http://www.billingsgazette.net/articles/2007/04/05/news/business/20-microsoft.txt This story reports that eDirect and Willms unlawfully sold Microsoft software smuggled from Jordan and other companies. Willms settled out of court with Microsoft for an excess of $1 million dollars. Willms company experienced a similar lawsuit with Symantec - http://www.cbc.ca/news/story/2007/05/16/tech-symanteclawsuit-20070516.html.
Mr. Willms is known to operate a variety of websites or companies, many of which are now defunct. An online search will present:
- “TV on your computer company,” tvtopcdirect (defunct) (see reviews at http://satellitetvcommission.com/satellite-tv-on-pc/satellite-tv-for-pc-vs-tv-to-pc-direct-16/)
- “Make money from home on the internet” company called Profit Stream Pro (http://profitstreampro.com/).
- A search for “Jesse Willms” and “scam” reveals a host of issues -- http://www.google.com/search?q=%22jesse+willms%22+scam&sourceid=navclient-ff&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1B3GGGL_en___US229
Okuma Nutritionals and Wu-YiSource.com
Okuma discovered a website at wulongsource.com, which was a virtual replica of our own website, wulongforlife.com, including much of our content and testimonials from our satisfied customers (a cached version of this site can be seen at http://web.archive.org/web/20070406233006/http://wulongsource.com/.
Another website, dietawards.org, was discovered, which appeared to be a non-biased website that reviewed tea (a cashed version pf this site can be seen at http://web.archive.org/web/20070313001359/http://www.dietawards.org/). This site is actually operated by Mr. Willms. It had given Willms’ company, wulongsource.com, the “Diet of the Year” award.
- Mr. Willms also agreed to put a small disclaimer on their dietawards.org site stating that it was a paid advertisement.
- The dietawards.org website was eventually taken down.
- When confronted, Mr. Willms ultimately agreed to take down most of the content that had been copied from Okuma’s website, wulongforlife.com, including our testimonials.
New testimonials were posted, claiming a customer had lost “64 pounds in 6 months” but the company had been in operation less than six months. We suspect these testimonials were fabricated. Here is the cached version of their site from May 11, 2007 -- http://web.archive.org/web/20070511010910/http://www.wulongsource.com/.
- Mr. Willms and Wu-YiSource continued to copy content from our wulongforlife.com website, which eventually led to the filing of a Federal Court lawsuit in the state of Colorado where Okuma Nutritionals is headquartered. We will keep you posted on the progress of this suit.
Perhaps the most concerning aspect about the fraudulent activities of Wu-YiSource and Mr. Willms is that our company receives emails from the customers of Wu-YiSource on a regular basis. There have been hundreds over the past several months.
Most of these emails are from people who purchased tea from Wu-YiSource, which they were led to believe was Okuma’s wulongforlife.com. Many consumers complained about their inability to return the tea they purchased from Wu-YiSource, which had been going on for months with no response. When taking the consumer’s order, Wu-YiSource unwittingly enrolled some of their customers in a auto-ship program, which results in monthly credit card charges for more tea without the ability to cancel. Others report that they were unsatisfied with the Wu-YiSource tea and simply wanted their money back.
FACT: Okuma Nutritionals offers only premium-grade products to its valued customers and is thoroughly quality control tested.
DID YOU KNOW…
Officialwulongtea.com was started a year after WuLongForLife.com, and copied substantial portions of Okuma Nutritionals’ website, WuLongForLife.com, yet they claim to be ‘official’? See other websites they have and additional facts below their homepage snapshot.
QFL, Inc. is a New Jersey company, run out of the home of its owner and president, Rama Singh. Until recently, QFL sold air purifiers and nutritional supplements from its website, www.qflinc.com. In the summer of 2006, QFL heard about Okuma’s Wu-Long Tea and decided to go into business.
Mr. Singh, as other has have done, copied substantial portions Okuma’s wulongforlife.com website, including text, testimonials from our customers, along with pictures of Okuma’s tea box and of its president, Stormy Brettmann-Skogg.
If someone were to search for Wu-long tea, as they have done, they may be led to Mr. Singh’s www.officialwulongtea.com website believing it was Okuma’s wulongforlife.com, especially since it had our product box picture on the website.
Other examples of fraudulent action by QFL:
- QFL copied a quote from David Kennedy, Editor-in-Chief of Muscle Media magazine and a co-founder of Okuma, stating Mr. Kennedy recommended QFL’s tea, when in fact this quote was referring to Okuma’s Wu-Long brand tea.
- The quote was later revised to come from Bill Phillips (author of the popular Body For Life books),
- The quote and picture of Mr. Phillip’s book continues to appear on officialwulongtea.com, even in lieu of a federal lawsuit.
- QFL’s website states that “Oprah Winfrey has talked about Wu Long tea” and has indicated that she drinks it in the evenings. This is untrue as far as we know. Oprah did do a segment on her enjoyment of tea and its health benefits, but certainly didn’t endorse, recommend, or even indicate drinking QFL’s tea.
- Despite the lawsuit, Oprah’s “recommendation” of QFL tea and her picture stays up on their site. QFL also maintains that Rachel Ray has had Wu Long on her show. Okuma is not aware of any such thing, and is skeptical that Ms. Ray has ever endorsed QFL’s tea.
- Because of QFL’s fraudulent claims, Google prohibited the use of Oprah’s name in QFL’s paid search advertisements. As a work-around, QFL began to skew the advertisements, using “O Prah,” “Orpah,” “Oprahs,” and so on, presumably to avoid detection.
- QFL also continues to say on its website that its tea is “the most powerful fat burner among all Wu Long teas. Its strong weight loss function is almost double of any other Wu Long.” http://www.officialwulongtea.com/product.cfm.
- QFL and Mr. Singh have admitted in court documents that this statement is false, yet this statement remains on their website.
- Okuma Nutritionals demanded the removal of all Okuma copyrighted content. Mr. Singh agreed and promised to comply. This did not happen.
- Okuma used legal action, which resulted in two affidavits sworn “under the penalty of perjury” to remove all content from wulongforlife.com and appearing on officialwulongtea. He did not comply.
- Okuma was forced to sue QFL and Mr. Singh. Even in the face of a federal lawsuit (trial is scheduled for April 21, 2008), QFL continues to engage in this conduct.
FACT: Okuma Nutritionals, LLC is RANKED #1 by PayPal under HEALTH & WEIGHT MANAGEMENT (which is recognized world-wide)
Did you Know…
Wulongtea.org is owned and operated by Infusium LLC, and is NOT an unbiased consumer informational site. The site is wrought with inaccurate information, and of course awards themselves 5/5 stars. See other websites they have and additional facts below their homepage snapshot.
At first glance, www.wulongtea.org appears to be a neutral and unbiased website devoted to reviewing various brands of Wu-Long Tea. It uses the “.org” web address, which is typically to be used by non-profit organizations and not commercial enterprises. It certainly seems like this would be a valuable resource for those shopping for oolong tea.
Unlike a credible, non-biased source for product reviews, such as Consumer Reports, this website is actually owned and operated by Infusium Tea, Inc., which sells its own line of Infusium tea.
Much like the phony “dietawards.org” website created by Mr. Willms, wulongtea.org is nothing more than a paid advertisement for Infusium. The irony is, wulongtea.org criticizes wu-yisource.com for not disclosing that it also owns dietawards.org.
The website lists various tea companies and their websites, giving ratings for each and including comments about their “findings.” The first problem is these ratings are not non-biased opinions, which could explain why the Infusium brand receives a glowing review and five stars, while every other competing line receives much lower ratings.
The website, while offering some valuable information on Wu-Long tea, the second, and larger problem with wulongtea.org is that it contains outdated and false information. This can contribute to the consumer being led astray.
For example, it states that Okuma Nutritionals is affiliated with other websites and companies, including:
Okuma Nutritionals never has, at anytime, been affiliated with this website or the company running it.
This leads to addressing another false statement on wulongtea.org, “Strange how they would need 7 virtually identical websites to sell one product if it really is the best selling product that they claim.” The fact is, Okuma Nutritionals does not have seven identical websites; it just appears that way because of the “scraping” of our content for use by other companies and their websites.
Wulongtea.org also claims that Okuma has an extraordinarily high level of fraud complaints. This is simply not true. Because of the above issue of “scraping,” consumers believe they are ordering from Okuma when in fact they have ordered from another company (example: wu-yisource.com). This has caused confusion in the market, but we take every call and try to help ever consumer understand what they need to do and where they need to go to resolve their problem, even when it is not with our company.
FACT: Okuma Nutritionals, LLC has over 400,000 Satisfied Customers!
What You Need to Know About Various Internet Scammers
While the nature of the internet makes it difficult to monitor every scam or company that appears, the Okuma team will continue to make you aware of any potentially deceptive or confusing information we discover about our product or Wu-Long tea. Many of these companies are located outside of the U.S. and use proxies to hide their identities. Often times Okuma is successful shutting down an illegal website, only to find that it has popped up under a different name. Some general words of warning:
- Be wary if a company is not located in a major country (many companies operate out of countries where you have no protection against fraud).
- Be wary if a company will only take orders in cash, wire transfer, or Western Union. Paying through a major credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, etc.) or PayPal is safe, and allows you recourse if the company should fail to send you goods.
- Be wary if a company doesn’t provide contact information or is slow to respond to your questions.
To keep costs down for our customers and so we can keep records of all communications, we handle all of our customer service by e-mail – you will see that we are very responsive. Many of the illicit companies we see either provide no contact information, or don’t respond to e-mail queries.
FACT: Our Testimonials are REAL PEOPLE with REAL RESULTS, unlike many before/after images on competitors’ sites. Our customers are required to show Okuma’s product in their ‘after’ photo as proof of product use…NO stock images or replica from other sites are used as testimonials.
Why Purchase Wu-Long Tea Products from Okuma?
The tea market has grown substantially over the last five years, which has expanded not only the variety of teas available, but the levels of quality from brand to brand.
On one end of the spectrum, some oolong teas are available at grocery or health food stores for a few dollars, and on the other end, Chinatown storefronts or specialty importers sell oolong tea for hundreds of dollars.
A variety of factors determine the quality of tea:
- Where the tea is grown
- What time of year it is harvested (spring is ideal because the fresh new tea leaves are harvested)
- How it is processed (often an art passed down through generations)
- How it is stored and handled after processing
- How quickly it makes it from the growers in China to your teacup
All of these factors impact not only how the tea tastes, but also the levels of polyphenols, catechin, thearubigin, ECGC, and anti-oxidants which make the tea so good for you.
Our Wu-Long Premium Chinese Slimming Tea is produced in tea gardens that conform to the lowest MRL (minimum residue levels) for approved agricultural inputs for tea. Unlike most tea importers who focus on providing their customers with the best tasting tea (often at huge expense), we have focused on providing tea loaded with the healthy compounds and anti-oxidants underlying the tea’s remarkable health and weight-loss benefits.
At the same time, taste is very important to us, and Okuma believes our Wu-Long Premium Chinese Slimming Tea is one of the best-tasting teas anywhere that also offers the maximum freshness and health benefits.
Okuma’s brand of oolong tea has been picked at the opportune time at low-MRL gardens. The tea is then processed by the same experts whose families have made oolong tea for generations, shipped here quickly and safely, packaged properly to preserve freshness and the vital compounds, and delivered to you with maximum potency.
Our company feels that the biggest reason to purchase tea from us is our excellent track record for providing quality product and service. Since Okuma opened our doors in late 2005, word of our brand of oolong tea spread from one satisfied customer to the next, we saw tremendous growth.
It was a challenge at first to keep up with demand, so we went back to our growers and found additional low-MRL, high-quality supply to satisfy the numerous customer orders. In just a few short years of operation, we have accumulated over 400,000 customers. We pride ourselves in the word-of-mouth recommendations from these satisfied customers, and from the incredible “buzz” our tea has generated.
As you can see from the chart below, within a few months of our launch, customers were searching for “Wu-Long,” our brand of tea, almost as often as they were searching for “oolong,” the generic type of tea.
wu long oolong
The wonderful response to our tea has been great for our dedicated customers. It has allowed us to purchase our select tea in large quantities and to develop an expansive warehouse and shipping operation to ensure that the tea maintains its freshness (and health benefits) from the garden to your cup.
FACT: November 2005, Okuma Nutritionals, LLC was the first company to offer Wu-Long Premium Chinese Slimming Tea to the United States.
There are imitation brands available online. Educate yourself and ensure you are always getting authentic Wu-Long Premium Chinese Slimming Tea from Okuma Nutritionals.