Don’t let the bed bugs bite

Sometimes there is truth to those Eastern European old wives tales.

According to a recent study, the most effect way of dealing with bed bugs is also the oldest – kidney bean leaves. When scattered on the floor at night bed bugs apparently Walk onto a leaf and get trapped by the trichomes, the little hairs on the leaf’s surface. The leaves can then be gathered in the morning and burned, sending the little blood suckers to the fiery death they so deserve, ridding the home of the pests in the process.

But unfortunately it appears the retailers – and the produce industry – are asleep at the switch on this obvious merchandising opportunity. Why aren’t bags of fresh kidney bean leaves being sold in the refrigerated produce case? They can be merchandised like – and next to – bags of salad.

Where is the branding?

Foxy Bed Bug Zappers has a nice ring to it. So does Fresh Express Bed Bug Train to Oblivion, Dole Jack and the Beanstalk brand, and Vampire Stake – from Ocean Spray. And where is the obligatory Disney tie-in? Sleeping Beauty Kidney Bean Leaves will be popular with girls everywhere. For the boys, perhaps Jiminy Cricket brand would be a best-seller. A licensing agreement with S.C. Johnson (a family company) could even bring the Raid brand to the produce case. For frugal home gardeners, Burpee could sell bags of kidney bean seeds. And for lazy, rich home gardeners Proven Winners could come out with a kidney bean plant line.

Sterno and Crock-Pot can come out with teeny, tiny stove-top fire pits for easy – and permanent – disposal. They could even be cross-merchandised with Jet Puff marshmallows for toasting.

Retailers in resort areas could make a killing merchandising kidney bean leaves to tourists to place around their rental houses, bungalows, hotel and motel rooms. Plus, to keep your house bed bug-free, retailers could suggest placing a circle of kidney bean leaves around suitcases before unpacking when coming home from a trip.

So if thinking of how to make some extra money to keep your store in the black is keeping you up at night, think about bed bugs and other things that go bump in the night. Sweet dreams!

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