Toxic Waste is Good For You

So there are a lot of new infants in my life these days. Today, I was browsing the local kid’s store on 7th ave looking for non-toxic toys. Ironically, what I found was toxic waste candy. By the cash register, I discovered Nuclear Waste Sludge Bars. Mmm. I was intrigued and went home and checked the website and learned that the manufacturer Candy Dynamics also makes Toxic Waste Hazardously Sour Candy packaged in the all too familiar hazardous waste storage drum.

The Toxic Waste Candy Company apparently sponsors a cleaner planet and even gives tips to kids on how to clean up the environment: the 3 Rs, carpooling, switching light bulbs, and carrying your own reusable shopping bag. While these have some impact on municipal solid waste and energy conservation, none of these tips really address the issue of toxic and hazardous waste.

Candy Dynamics also issued some safety advice to kids for Halloween, like travelling in groups and wearing reflective clothing, failing to mention that eating hazardous waste might kill you.

Something about this candy and company is bothering me. Do I feel like it is PR spin of Toxic Sludge? Do I really think kids will think toxic waste is yummy? I grew up eating candy cigarettes and chewing big league chew, which never led to a serious tobacco habit. Still there is something perverse in this.

Perhaps my problem is that I’ve worked on Superfund sites before. I’ve sent drums filled with soil cuttings away for storage, testing and disposal. There is no eating anything on a hazardous waste site. No candy in the drums. Just long days of hard work sampling soil hoping you properly decontaminated yourself. Making and marketing candy out of this just seems wrong to me.

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~ by sangamithra on November 16, 2007.

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