Lawmakers are trying to pass a state law that would require Procter & Gamble to change the look of Tide Pods to make them look less appealing to children.
State Senator Brad Hoylman and New York State Assemblymember Aravella Simotas sent a letter to Procter & Gamble CEO David Taylor on February 5, asking the company to change the packaging for Tide Pods. They are interested in passing a bill they created to create stronger safety regulations for the tiny liquid detergent packets. The New York politicians want Procter & Gamble to make detergent pods with child-resistant wrappers, clearer warning labels and make them one color so they look less appealing to children.
"We’re asking for all laundry detergent pods to be uniform in color. We don’t need them to look like Gummy Bears in order for consumers to use them," Hoylman said.
“Toxic substances like these laundry pods should not be packaged to look like candy or toys which lure children to put them in their mouths, Assemblymember Aravella Simotas said during a news conference Tuesday.
The urge to change the packaging and color of Tide Pods comes after a disturbing social media trend called #TidePodChallenge emerged that showed kids across the country posting videos of themselves eating Tide Pods.
Tide has tried to address the bizarre trend in January when they partnered with New England Patriots star Rob Gronkowski to release a PSA asking people to not eat the detergent pods.
Despite the efforts made by Tide to tell people not to eat their detergent pods, Holyman and Simotas believe more needs to be done.
“While your recent public service campaign to stem the video ‘Tide Pod Challenge’ is to be commended, it falls far short of what is needed to prevent the continuing problem of accidental poisonings, as opposed to intentional ingestion by teenagers,” they wrote in the letter to Procter & Gamble CEO, David Taylor.
Tide Pods incidents and deaths
According to Holyman, there have been more than 34,000 incidents involving young children accidentally eating Tide Pods and at least two deaths between 2012 and 2015. Holyman says there have been more than 10,000 incidents in 2017. Adults with dementia are at risk, too. Senator Holyman notes there have been at least six deaths reported since 2012.
It’s outrageous that @ProcterGamble still hasn’t made #TidePods safer to protect young children! Assemblymember @AravellaSimotas & I will be discussing this tomorrow 2/6 at 10 am in Albany with @NYPIRG & @CleanHealthyNY pic.twitter.com/QaquaqVwUW— Senator Brad Hoylman (@bradhoylman) February 5, 2018