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Statement by SC Johnson on Intentional Misuse of Pest Products

Statement by Kelly M. Semrau, Senior Vice President Global Corporate Affairs, Communication and Sustainability at SC Johnson

Over the past 24 hours, we’ve seen an increasing number of media reports about drug users intentionally misusing pest products such as Raid® and OFF!®, made by SC Johnson, to achieve a catatonic state for up to 45 minutes. The reported effects are completely inaccurate.

According to our scientific experts, exposure to the active ingredients in these products would not cause the reported effects. Global authorities, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. EPA, for many decades have studied these active ingredients and they have not reported ill effects like this. Additionally, even if these active ingredients were intentionally overused, we would not expect these types of symptoms, nor would they last for 45 minutes.

While well intended, news reports such as these are extremely concerning when they correlate a product’s impact on a bug with its impact on a human being. Not only are the conclusions often incorrect, the report could encourage copycat experimentation. Pest control products should never be used in any way that goes against the label instructions. Our products are safe when used as directed.

Drug abuse is an alarming epidemic in the United States and beyond, and this is of great concern for all of us in the consumer products industry whose products may periodically be misused. The last thing we would ever want is for media reporting to inspire this misuse, that’s why we feel a responsibility to issue this statement today.

SC Johnson is a founding member of the Alliance for Consumer Education, which for nearly two decades has educated parents, educators, law enforcement and poison control centers about inhalation abuse, the misuse of products and the importance of following label instructions.