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The Company

Our mission: Making pest control smarter

It’s as simple as that. At RESCUE!® it’s our goal to design, manufacture and market the safest, most effective pest control solutions available. Our products are the result of exhaustive and ongoing research and development, decades of experience and a commitment to solutions that respect the environment without sacrificing results.

Our History

Pest control options have changed dramatically since Rod Schneidmiller founded Sterling International (RESCUE!®’s parent company) in 1982. Today, consumers are more aware of the dangers which conventional pesticides pose to the environment – and RESCUE® brand insect traps are recognized around the world for providing effective, reliable and natural insect control solutions. RESCUE’s “bio-pesticide” approach uses a non-toxic mode of action to draw target insects to specially designed traps – eliminating the need to “bomb” an entire area with chemicals in hopes of killing a few bugs.

A Better Idea

Schneidmiller grew up working on a farm in Eastern Washington and saw firsthand that haphazard spraying of harmful chemicals was unsafe and only marginally effective. In addition, the pesticides often wiped out beneficial insects like honeybees. He anticipated that consumers would eventually become concerned about what he saw as the obvious damage and expense associated with this kind of “chemical warfare”.

After receiving his degree in agronomy and economics from Washington State University, the young entrepreneur went to work to create a pest control product designed to trap bugs with lures intended only for the targeted insect. He spent hours in the garage fine-tuning a mixture of natural ingredients that, when broken down, would lure flies.

A reusable-fly trap was the first product Schneidmiller developed. The plastic jar contained a powder attractant that dissolved in water and lured flies through holes in the lid.

At that time, being “green” went against the grain, recalls Schneidmiller. In his early sales calls to lawn & garden buyers for larger retailers, he frequently “was laughed out of the place” and heard the question, “Why would anyone trap an insect when they can spray it?”

Eventually, a few small hardware and garden stores in Spokane gave Schneidmiller a chance and began to stock the fly trap on their shelves. As the product caught on, he continued to make innovations that resulted in a disposable trap — also for flies — and a reusable trap for yellowjackets. In the mid-1980s, Ace Hardware became the first major national retailer to buy Sterling’s product line. The result was a huge breakthrough in awareness and acceptance for the insect trap category.

More than thirty years later, after the company’s humble start, Sterling’s line of fly traps, yellowjacket and Japanese beetle traps and a variety of other products are available to consumers throughout the U.S. and beyond. The brand name RESCUE!® was adopted in the late 1980s.


Green Commitment

It’s not easy being green. But it’s worth it.

RESCUE!® products are good for the environment, but they’re also good for consumers who care about an effective method of pest control. Years of research, field-testing and enhancement by Sterling’s team of scientists go into every product to ensure that it consistently lures the targeted insect in different geographic locations and varied weather conditions.

RESCUE!® insect traps use naturally occurring substances to create chemical attractants that mimic an insect’s natural pheromones and lure them into the scientifically engineered trap that’s designed to let them in, but not out. There are no toxic chemicals, no unintended victims – just safe, effective pest control when you need it.

RESCUE!® products receive EPA registration

RESCUE!® insect traps and attractants are registered with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – a process that requires demonstrating the products’ safety and efficacy.

RESCUE!® products are classified by the EPA as “biopesticides or biochemical pesticides”, terms used to describe naturally occurring substances that control pests through non-toxic mechanisms. These include substances that interfere with mating, such as insect sex pheromones, as well as various scented plant extracts used to attract pest insects to traps.

Conventional pesticides, by contrast, are synthetic materials that directly kill or inactivate a pest.

On its web site, EPA acknowledges that biopesticides “are becoming increasingly popular and often are safer than traditional chemical pesticides.” Biopesticide products are derived from animals, plants, bacteria, and certain minerals. Even innocuous ingredients such as canola oil and baking soda have pesticidal applications and are considered biopesticides.

As part of the registration process, EPA required scientific data showing that RESCUE!® products cause no unreasonable risks to human health or the environment when used as directed. EPA also required detailed scientific data to support claims of each specific species caught in RESCUE!® traps. When the packaging says the trap catches a Red Wasp, a Bald-faced Hornet or any other species of insect, the consumer can be assured that there is scientific data to back up that claim.

The RESCUE!® attractant formulations have not changed; however, new packaging labels incorporate language mandated by EPA for registered products. Most notably, an ingredient statement appears on the front of each package.

Sold since 1982, RESCUE!® pest management products have never used poisons or toxicants to kill pest insects. The insects are lured into a trap where they dehydrate or drown. The traps themselves are patented designs developed through years of extensive field testing. The attractants are mixtures of naturally-occurring ingredients which are formulated for specific pest species and do not lure beneficial or endangered insects.

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