Laundry pods: 8.2 million bags recalled because they can open easily, poison children

Tide, Gain, Ace and Ariel brands of liquid laundry pods can be ingested by children, pets; full refund offered

Courtesy of CPSC | Public Domain
Procter & Gamble has recalled 8.2 million bags of liquid laundry pods under the brand names of Tide, Gain, Ace and Ariel, the Consumer Product Safety Commission announced. The bags hold the individual pods but the bags can split open, allowing children, pets and other “vulnerable populations” to ingest the liquid or suffer skin or eye injuries from exposure, the announcement said.
Ingesting laundry detergent or any household cleaning product that contains chemical compounds called surfactants can kill someone who has other health issues.
The products at issue are bags containing anywhere from 12 to 39 laundry detergent packets. They were manufactured from September 2023 to February 2024.
The recall involves 17 products:
  • Tide Pods Original 
  • Tide Pods Light 
  • Tide Pods Oxi 
  • Tide Pods Ultra Oxi 
  • Tide Simply Pods Plus Oxi Boost 
  • Tide Pods Clean Breeze Scent 
  • Tide Pods Free & Gentle 
  • Tide Pods Spring Meadow Scent 
  • Gain Flings Original 
  • Gain Flings Moonlight Breeze Scent 
  • Gain Flings Spring Daydream Scent 
  • Gain Flings Blissful Breeze Scent 
  • Gain Flings Plus Ultra Oxi 
  • Gain Flings Plus Odor Defense 
  • Ace Pods Clean Breeze 
  • Ace Pods Spring Meadow 
  • Ariel Pods Alpine Breeze

The product codes for the recalled items are listed here. For more information, see P&G’s overview page.

Consumers with the affected bags of detergent should put them in a child-resistant container and make sure they can’t be accessed by children. Customers can submit a photo of the product with the lot code. People can get a full refund, a free child-resistant bag to put the pods in and a free cabinet latch to store laundry products securely.

Procter & Gamble has received four complaints about children accessing the laundry pods and three of them ingested them, but it’s not clear whether those laundry pods were in the defective bags.

The products were sold at major retailers such as Target, Walmart, Home Depot and Family Dollar, as well as online through Amazon and other websites. They cost $5 to $30, depending on the size of the bag.

There were at least four recalls last year for cleaning products in packages that weren’t child-resistant:

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Teresa Murray

Consumer Watchdog, U.S. PIRG Education Fund

Teresa directs the Consumer Watchdog office, which looks out for consumers’ health, safety and financial security. Previously, she worked as a journalist covering consumer issues and personal finance for two decades for Ohio’s largest daily newspaper. She received dozens of state and national journalism awards, including Best Columnist in Ohio, a National Headliner Award for coverage of the 2008-09 financial crisis, and a journalism public service award for exposing improper billing practices by Verizon that affected 15 million customers nationwide. Teresa and her husband live in Greater Cleveland and have two sons. She enjoys biking, house projects and music, and serves on her church missions team and stewardship board.

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