Weird Week: Tide – In response to the social media-driven “Tide Pod Challenge” in which people – mostly teens and 20-somethings – post videos of themselves and friends eating laundry detergent packets, Tide parent company and ginormous brand house Procter & Gamble issued a public statement touting its concern for “the safety of the people who use our products” and a “don’t eat detergent” video featuring NFL star and influential knucklehead Rob Gronkowski (figuring the knucklehead-to-knucklehead approach was the best path). Of course, the entire Tide Pod Challenge concept is unfathomable for those of us who remember getting our mouths washed out with soap as children… especially those of us who can still taste the Dial.
Bittersweet Week: Nestle – Another seismic shift is about to occur as the world’s largest packaged-foods company announced this week that is will sell its U.S. candy business to former competitor Ferrero Rocher for $2.8B. Dwindling U.S. market share and the company’s new focus on “nutrition, health and wellness” – Nestle recently adopted a new “Good Food. Good Life.” tagline – were the driving forces behind the sale. What fate awaits such iconic treats as Crunch, Baby Ruth and Butterfingers bars? Will it be cruel? Or Kind?
Bad Week: Spotify – The music streaming giant is being sued for $1.6B by a copyright management company that maintains Spotify used more than 10,000 songs from various artists “without a license and without compensation.” It's estimated (by me) that fully three-quarters of those song were created by performers "without talent and without remorse."