For the child that has everything this holiday season, except for a grasp of the diseases that can and possibly will kill us all, there’s Ebola. More specifically, there’s the Giant Microbes plush Ebola toy, which turns the deadly disease into a cute and cuddly learning tool that helps kids understand that while the furry fella might be a fun imaginary friend, it also represents “the T. Rex of microbes.” It sounds crazy, though, that a company is actually selling a stuffed Ebola toy, but it’s completely true. Well, it’s kind of true, because Giant Microbes isn’t technically selling them right now, due to the fact that they’re all sold out.
In an interview with CBS News, the company’s Vice President of Operations, Laura Sullivan, explained that Giant Microbes was created as a way for doctors and parents to teach kids about the many diseases out there, while not completely terrifying them. After all, what kid doesn’t love a stuffed animal? As for Ebola, Giant Microbes started carrying the above stuffed toy and some other products five years ago, but the recent domination of headlines has made it hard for the manufacturer to keep up.
While she declined to give specific sales figures for the Ebola plush toys, Sullivan said: “They’re selling like hot cakes. We’re out of stock again.”
They have ramped up production with their Chinese manufacturers and are rushing to feed the demand, Sullivan said.
Sullivan said this isn’t the first case of a headline-making disease affecting their sales. The swine flu outbreak a few years ago caused a similar spike in sales, but Sullivan added it was not quite at the level of Ebola. (Via CBS News)
Sullivan calls the toys a “helpful way” for families to “take some of the scariness away” when they talk to children about them. They certainly have to be better than plopping kids down in front of the TV so they can learn about Ebola from cable news shows. They’d be digging their own bunkers in their backyards by dinner time.