today, following a letter sent to Procter & Gamble on Feb. 5, calling on the company to overhaul its colorful liquid detergent Tide Pods and urging passage of their bill (S100A/A4646A) to create stronger safety regulations for liquid packets. Citing over 10,000
incidents involving young children in 2017, Simotas and Hoylman argue that the company's efforts to date—including the addition of a bittering agent, childproof containers and some warning labels—have fallen short.
The American Cleaning Institute (ACI) issued a statement in response to proposed legislation in in New York State legislative dealing with liquid laundry detergent packets:
"The American Cleaning Institute is aware of a recent New York state legislative proposal addressing liquid detergent packets. The fact is, legislation is unnecessary because there are already comprehensive activities taking place addressing the safety of detergent packets.
"Manufacturers of liquid laundry detergent packets are fully committed to reducing accidental exposures to these products, which are used safely in homes across all the United States, including those in the state of New York. Manufacturers have already made major changes to their packaging including the harder to open packaging, the addition of easy-to-understand safety icons, improving warning labels to advise proper use and storage instructions.”
ACI continued, “Manufacturers of these products are also actively engaged with the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to coordinate actions to reduce accidents
"ACI joined consumer advocates and manufacturers in developing a voluntary safety standard for liquid laundry packets, which was published in December 2015 by the standards-setting body ASTM International. The standard contains a strong set of package and product design interventions supported by science and research that are intended to reduce accidental exposure to liquid laundry packets.
It is important to note that, by the end of 2016, more than 99 percent of all liquid laundry packets shipped to retailers were in compliance with the ASTM standard. ASTM International has a process in place to monitor these interventions and determine their impact on reducing accidents.
Additionally, ACI launched PACKETS UP!, a consumer education initiative as part of industry’s ongoing effort to help reduce the number of accidents related to liquid laundry packets. As part of its PACKETS UP! program, ACI launched an educational microsite, PACKETSUP.com, which offers resources to encourage safe laundry room practices."
Companies following the standard must include standardized warnings, precautionary statements and safety icons on the labels of these products; utilize opaque packaging to prevent visibility of the packets from the outside; and utilize package closure designs that challenge the typical strength, mental acuity or dexterity of a young child, said ACI in its statement.