Apparently this plant is a huge producer of acrylic acid, which is apparently an important ingredient in many disposable diapers. Fearing an eventual shortage or price hike, parents in Texas stormed their local big box stores (okay, maybe “stormed” is an exaggeration, but it does conjure up a cool visual of moms and dads rising up against Les Miz-style barricades constructed from Target carts).
“I don’t want to ever run out,” one mom tells CBS Dallas/Fort Worth.
A rep for Procter & Gamble, one of the plant’s biggest customers and the makers of just about everything in your closets, including Pampers, says there is no need for looting and diaper-related rampages: “[P&G] has strong contingency plans and a robust global supply network to help us mitigate against supply challenges… While we are still assessing the situation, we do not expect significant impact on most of our global business.”
The folks at Huggies say it’s not that big a deal for them because that particular plant was not a significant supplier for them.
But perhaps P&G will swoop in and start buying from Huggies’ vendor, causing a shortage there. Then Huggies moves on to whomever supplied for Luvs. And what about Depends? What… about… Depends??
“That’s why I stock up,” says one dad who plans to make repeat trips to the store. “You never can have too many of those, that’s just something you can never have too many of. We always need diapers.”
We’re going to assume he means that he always needs diapers until his children are of an age when they no longer require them.
No one mentions that an artificial shortage of diapers could result from parents unnecessarily buying up months of them in advance, leaving empty shelves for people who don’t keep track of chemical plant explosions on other continents.