Many of the things you buy and own were touched at some point by Chinese hands, and those hands are about to get a little more expensive. The Guangdong province in China, the seat of the country’s manufacturing might, is going to get a 20% minimum wage increase starting January 1st, 2012.
If you’ve been sitting on some great idea that will make life easier for the average consumer, you can try pitching it to Procter & Gamble, writes the New York Times. Swiffer, Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, and Glad ForceFlex trash bags all originated outside of P&G, although in most cases these outside ideas come from other companies. Still, you can go to their Connect + Develop website to pitch your own products if you like–just don’t try putting swiffer booties on cats, because they’ve already rejected that idea.
If you always assumed striped toothpaste was the work of a magic devil, assume again. It turns out it’s the work of a little extended pipe inside the tube that merges the different colored substances onto the toothpaste highway and straight onto your brush. That mechanical trick is half a century old, however; modern varieties sometimes just come that way, as this frozen toothpaste photo that’s been around for a while demonstrates.
Colgate-Palmolive has reported a 19% increase in quarterly profits, and says it’s partially due to price increases (but also greater volume sales and a weak dollar). [Reuters]
A Pennsylvania K-Mart levied an illegal $0.28 tax on Mary Bach’s $3.99 12-pack of Angel Soft toilet paper. Pennsylvania’s sales tax guide clearly states that toilet paper is a non-taxable item. Mary first spoke with a cashier after noticing the illegal charge. When K-Mart again charged her the tax on a second visit, she decided to sue.