Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Tide®-brand detergent in five-gallon buckets? Not a chance!

This post has proven to be popular with over 36,000 55,000 page views. To read the original post, scroll down to "Original post:" I'm putting updates here at the top so that they get noticed.

Update July 16, 2016: Another fundraising company has posted a comment, Profitable Solutions Fundraising. This company, like the others, is selling detergent in five-gallon buckets for fundraising but is not misrepresenting it as Tide. You can contact them by filling out a form on their "Contact Us" page.

Updates September 27, 2015: There is another company offering liquid detergent in five-gallon buckets for fundraising, Sudz Fundraising. There is a "Contact Us" form on their web site as well as a live chat option. You can also contact them through email or by calling them at 765-598-5521.

Tonight, I received an email from a person who prefers to remain anonymous. She wrote, "I saw a post on fb of a store nearby that claims they sell actual Tide in the five gallon buckets. We did a little research and found your blog. I wanted to send you these screen shots. I also made a post on the page questioning the authenticity of the product. I will try and go back through the blog and send to P&G as well. I don't care they sell detergent but they shouldn't claim it is a product that it isn't. Thank you for your blog!" The first image is a picture which she sent, cropped to remove some identifying information. The second picture is my response to Jake's Place Wholesale on Facebook:

The comment she made on this Facebook post has been deleted but mine remains for now. I'm glad she read this blog post because now, if she decides to buy this detergent, she will know that it is not a genuine Procter & Gamble product. It may be excellent or it may be not so good (see comments for more information). But it won't be genuine.

Update April 12, 2015: Selling liquid detergent in five-gallon buckets has proven to be an excellent fundraiser for various organizations, especially high-school sports teams. However, the manufacturers producing detergent for these fundraisers do not claim that they are selling the real thing but are selling alternate products that they are trying to make as good as the real thing. When you read this post, please keep this in mind; not all liquid detergent in five-gallon buckets is counterfeit.

One of the companies selling detergent for fundraising is Good Clean Fundraising (www.GoodCleanFundraising.com or 800-680-3775). For more information about this company, click on the links or look for more information from Michael A. Fitzgerald near the bottom of the comments (March 13, 2015). I can't directly endorse this company but I haven't seen any negative reports about it, either.

I will check for other companies doing this (if there are any other companies) and post an update for those who want to pursue this as a fundraising opportunity. Full disclosure: Mr. Fitzgerald did not offer to make nor would I accept any payment for adding this update. I do not operate that way.

[Some other minor changes were made with this update.]

Update March 3, 2015: A commenter has found Tide (powdered, not liquid) in five-gallon buckets imported from Vietnam being sold in Houston. Look for a link in a comment near the bottom. It's getting interesting!

Update December 25, 2014: Procter & Gamble has done a good job stopping the counterfeits. Don't try selling generic detergent as the real Tide®-brand detergent. It won't work. An alert reader noticed (see a comment from Sept. 12, 2014) that P&G sells industrial powdered Tide in five-gallon buckets but you would be shocked at the price. I will update this post when I get a price from a distributor.

Original post:
Back in April 2013, I overheard some people talking about getting Tide® in five-gallon buckets as part of a school fundraiser. I was skeptical, did some research and notified Procter & Gamble, the manufacturers of Tide, of people selling what was supposed to be Tide this way. Here is their response (emphasis added):

from: "P&G Tide" <address omitted>
to: "bruce.hobbs@gmail.com" <bruce.hobbs@gmail.com>
date: Mon, Apr 15, 2013 at 9:01 AM
subject: Thank you for contacting Tide

Thank you for contacting Tide, Bruce.

You are correct that Tide does not offer our detergents in 5 gallon buckets. 

I will pass your email on to the proper department within P&G.  As a thank you for letting us know of this I will be happy to send you a money saving coupon for a tide product by postal mail.  Please allow 2-3 weeks for delivery.

Thanks for writing.


Tide Team

Well, I thought that the brand-marketing whizzes at P&G would put an end to this real fast. They sure did. Here it is six months later and I could only find one half-way decent attempt at selling Tide in five-gallon orange(!) buckets and I bet they're off of Facebook within a day of this being posted.

I tip my hat to you, Procter & Gamble, for preserving your excellent brand of detergent.

I did a Google search today and here's what I found: (Top five relevant results shown and, yes, I broke the links. Do your own search!)

5 gallon bucket tide | eBay

This link did produce eBay listings, but they were for laundry detergent "Comparable Tide" [sic]. No fake, official-looking Tide labels on any of the buckets.

Wholesale Laundry Soap | Facebook

This appears to be the real counterfeit deal (in an orange bucket!) complete with a fake label. P&G, time to go after this one. Who would think that Facebook would allow counterfeit merchandise to be sold?

Tide liquid laundry detergent 5 gallon buckets - Arizona Classifieds

This has a gray bucket with a Tide label. Arizona Classifieds had a place to complain so I did.

Tide® Professional Closed-Loop Laundry Detergent, 5 gal Bucket ...

This one shows a picture of a box of Gain and the price is $0.00. Doesn't look like it's even in business.

Tide Formula 5 Gallon Pail Liquid Laundry Soap - $25.00 - TradeKey

Wow, they have 1,800 five-gallon buckets for sale of "Tide Formula Laundry Soap." You can deal directly with a counterfeiter. The picture is too fuzzy to see if the label is counterfeit. I bet the formula for Tide is almost as secret as the one for Coca-Cola®.

So, to wrap this up, I'm happy that P&G listened to me* and cleaned this up (pun intended). If anyone offers you a five-gallon bucket of Tide, you now know it's a scam.

* Obviously, there is no way for me to know if my tip was the one that caused these scams to be fixed. I will keep making suggestions anyway.

Update Oct. 11, 2015:

Here's the comment I posted on Liquidation Station, Nashville, Tennesee's Facebook page: "If this is powdered, it's likely real Tide imported from Vietnam (note the CHUYÊN DUNG in the middle of the label). If it's liquid detergent, it's likely counterfeit (not Tide at all). I wrote a blog post about this." A tip of the hat to Angela for alerting me to this. The comment she submitted is below. Follow up: My comment has been deleted, but so has the post and the image. (That's why I took a screen shot.)

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