The recent internet challenge featuring the ‘Forbidden Snack’ otherwise known Tide Pods has resulted in teenagers and young adults like posting videos of themselves consuming the chemical filled packet.
This trend has gotten so prevalent that Poison Control has issued a high alert and people continue to ingest the packets. Poison Control’s statistics display that since January 1st, they have handled 119 cases on contact with detergent pods among thirteen to nineteen-year old’s. Tide themselves have taken note of the misuse of their products, Tide’s official Twitter addresses the issue in a video, restating that their products are intended for laundry and consist of highly concentrated cleaning chemicals.
There’s a reason for the high alert. Despite what individuals have referred to as a candy like appearance, Tide Pods remain inedible. Consuming the liquid can result in burns to the mouth, throat and stomach, and when it burns there’s a risk of it coming into contact with eyes or even lungs if a person happens to gasp when the packets burst in their mouth. Poison Control themselves warn that serious consequences can lead to seizures, respiratory arrest, coma, Pulmonary edema, and in extreme cases death.
Individuals such as Harold Zeliger, who wrote an article for Fortune, argue that if safety measures the companies have put forth have failed to prevent ingestion, then manufacturers shouldn’t be permitted to sell them in stores. Alternatively, Wake N Bake Donuts in California has made a donut with the tide pods design in icing on the front, a detergent free alternative to the pods.
As a result of the risks YouTube has opted to pull any videos of YouTubers participating in the challenge, citing in an interview with that it goes against community guidelines prohibiting “content that’s intended to encourage dangerous activities that have an inherit risk of physical harm”. Amazon has been deleting reviews that refer to the taste of the pods.
A review three days ago by user “Z” addresses the issue simply, “Works well for cleaning, bad for eating”.