SC Johnson Lends a Hand to Help Fight Zika


March 8, 2016

Aedes aegypti mosquito

The bite of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes is spreading the Zika virus. Photo Credit: jentavery via / CC BY

It did our collective heart good to read earlier this week that SC Johnson, manufacturer of a mosquito repellant we dare not name here, donated 60,000 bottles of OFF! (whoops.) personal mosquito repellent to the CDC Foundation, in partnership with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Over-the-counter insect repellant is not exactly a favorite topic in this industry, but we can all surely appreciate this sort of charitable, proactive effort on the part of the 130-year-old company, which is one of the world’s largest manufacturers, employing 13,000 globally.

Just a PR stunt? Perhaps. But that’s a pretty cynical way to look at the implications here. The company committed to provide at least $15 million to help protect families from Zika. Their personal repellant will be part of Zika prevention kits distributed by the CDC, specifically targeted to help pregnant women in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and American Samoa.  So … even if it is a stunt, it’s one that provides legitimate help where it’s needed most.

Last month, SC Johnson sent an initial donation of OFF! to the CDC to meet an immediate need for resources. According to a release from PR Newswire, the products were used in assembling 5,000 kits that have already been distributed. Additional units of the repellant will be included in more Zika prevention kits distributed by the CDC. This kits also include educational materials, products and tools to help prevent the contraction and transmission of Zika.

The pest management industry is one of the most generously philanthropic I’m aware of. See any “Giving Back” feature in one of your back issues of PMP for evidence of this. When small, family-owned businesses do so much for such a wide array of charitable causes, it’s nice to see a manufacturing monolith like SC Johnson pull their own weight too. Because when it comes to a threat like a virus outbreak, we’re all in this together.

Has your company done anything exceptionally charitable that you’d like to brag about? Let us know. We like to tell your stories to inspire, which helps perpetuate more stories that strengthen the public’s perception of the pest management industry as one that has America’s back, and steps up to help when it can.

Likewise, if you have any stories related to Zika — whether they be about charitable donations, outreach programs, or educating the public — we’d like to hear about that too!


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