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Synthesis

Vanilla headache

October 17, 2016 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 94, ISSUE 41

C &EN’s recent article on the shortage of vanilla beans (Sept. 12, page 38) brought to mind a story from the early days of cellophane at DuPont.

The cellophane marketing organization was being introduced to a new series of films coated with polyvinylidene chloride from Dow Chemical rather than nitrocellulose from DuPont. The marketing organization was, by design, made up of nontechnically trained personnel.

After the presentation of the virtues of the new films, two high-ranking marketing managers were heard involved in a discussion on “where would they get all of the vanilla beans?”

Elwood P. Blanchard Jr.
Mendenhall, Pa.


Corrections

Sept. 5, page 2: A letter to the editor incorrectly stated when Lord Cherwell served as an adviser to Winston Churchill. Lord Cherwell advised Churchill during World War II, not World War I.

Sept. 12, page 16: Because of a production error, a structural diagram of triclocarban was cut off to incorrectly show two chlorine atoms as carbon atoms. Here is the correct structure.

Sept. 12, page 27: A feature story profiling Dow Chemical’s Peter Trefonas incorrectly identified when Dow acquired Rohm and Haas. The acquisition occurred in 2009, not 2001.

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