By Gregory B. Hladky
11:34 AM EDT, May 19, 2011
“Lazy Larry” may be all zoned out on the (federally unregulated) sleep-inducing supplement melatonin, but he's sure got some folks up in Massachusetts bouncing off the walls.
Lazy Larry is the cute cartoon character adorning packages of a new commercial brownie called “Lazy Cakes” that is infused with melatonin. Some health and municipal officials in Connecticut's northern neighbor are angrily warning the cartoon could be luring children to eat the melatonin-rich brownies, according to the Boston Herald.
One Massachusetts official called the packaging “despicable,” another labeled it “heinous,” and others are calling for a ban on the product. News reports from Tennessee earlier this year focused on a 2-year-old boy who was hospitalized after eating a Lazy Cake given to him by a relative.
Lazy Cake spokeswoman Laura Finlayson insisted the cartoon isn't aimed at children and the brownies “are not marketed to children.” She told reporters that Lazy Larry is nothing more than “a relaxed brownie. … We gave him a personality.”
Some two million Lazy Cakes have been sold in the past six months. Each brownie contains about 8 mg of melatonin, and one medical expert said 10 mg of melatonin would put an adult to sleep in a hurry.
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