Hey moms, stop what you are all doing and put those sippy cups down. Photos showing gross, moldy sippy cups have spread like wildfire on Facebook. Parents are pissed and they are pointing the blame at one specific baby products manufacturer: Tommee Tippee.
It all started when Marie-Pier S. L’Hostie from Montreal shared an image of her friend Simon O’kanada's Tommee Tippee cup. According to Buzzfeed, O’kanada wondered why his son "was getting sick," and so he decided to crack open the security valve of the sippy cup (later realizing that this was the only way you can find the hidden mold). Here's what he saw:
Concerned parents soon filled the comments section with their own photos showing mold they had found in their children’s sippy cups.
Moreover, O’kanada’s friend Penny Powell had also posted a bunch of nasty sippy cup photos. She wrote (translated): “Those of you with these cups pay special attention, he has washed it with his hands and in the dishwasher, etc., and the mildew has stayed anyway! Share it!”
Though these photos have recently gone viral, many complaints of moldy sippy cups have been found since as early as last year. This Facebook post from September 2015 shows icky, icky mold living inside a Tommee Tippee security valve:
Britney Quinones, who shared the post, even offered her own advice on how to properly clean the darn things: "I washed me (sic) thoroughly and always soak all his bottles with vinegar. This little stopper, you can't open it whatsoever, and there is no way for the water to fully drain and air out. The spout also had mold inside of it, I cleaned it with toothpicks...."
Hundreds of customers have expressed their anger on the Tommee Tippee North America Facebook page about the mold, and the company responded with this very long statement:
We always welcome parents’ feedback, comments and ideas. We continually develop our products and look for ways to improve them, so feedback from parents is vital to us. Positive feedback tells us we’re doing the right thing, but just as importantly, like all companies, we learn even more when negative experiences are brought to our attention.
We’ve sold millions of Sippee cups and have had some very positive feedback. However, we know from visitor posts that a few people have not had a good experience with the valve part of the cup. For this we sincerely apologise and we are actively following up on any concerns raised.
We understand that the wellbeing of little ones is paramount and we can reassure all parents that we have extensively tested the valves. We have also been testing them with a panel of 140 mums in the United States.
The results support that when used with recommended liquids (cold, light fluids including water and non-pulp juices) and cleaned in line with instructions, there are no problems. Difficulties have arisen though when liquids that are not recommended for use in the cups have been used, like thick formula milk, pulpy juice and warm liquids. We also recommend that cups are not left for long periods before being cleaned.
However, we do understand that there may be other factors that are difficult to replicate in our testing, so our Careline team would like to speak directly to any parents who are experiencing problems. This will allow us to hear their views, and replace the cup with an alternative of their choice. The number to call is 0 800 10 07 25.
We’ve also prepared a page on our website to help parents care for their cups and valves.
According to WGNTV, a company representative had said that "the mold is likely caused by non-recommended liquids in the cups." Further down the statement, the company intends to make a transparent valve so parents can see if there is anything ugly building up inside.
On the other hand, one shameless man had pointed the blame on parents and not the company for the cause of mold build-up:
OK, thanks for that Brian, mind sharing your method of how to efficiently clean these sippy cups from moldy hell?