From vomiting to profuse sweating, some Bay Area children trying the viral “One Chip Challenge” are getting sick.
Since 2016, Paqui tortilla chip makers have encouraged people to try the social media challenge.
The challenge involves eating one of their pepper chips sold in an individual package, and see how long people can last before seeking relief.
The Texas-based company asked those taking part to share their experience online and thousands of users have posted videos to social media, including TikTok since this year’s "reaper chip challenge" began.
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But now, some students got sick while attempting the challenge. This is causing some Bay Area school districts to issue warnings to parents.
In a statement, the Dublin Unified School District said, “we learned about the one chip challenge trend after several students were sent home due to adverse reactions related to this product. As the district has done in the past, when a social media challenges encourages activity that could be harmful, we send a letter to our parents regarding the situation and encourage them to have a conversation with their children.”
In Walnut Creek, officials said one student got so sick after doing the challenge that he threw up at school.
Campbell resident Katrina Jones, who has a teenage daughter said that she is worried about these types of social media challenges.
“I’m not surprised at all. It’s just another weird thing they’re doing, and it’s another thing that parents need to put a stop to this influence on social media,” she said.
17-year-old Anna Voskovoynik of Campbell told NBC Bay Area Saturday that she has seen the social media challenge on TikTok but has no desire to try it.
“I don’t think kids should do it. You don't know the dangers of it. Throwing up is not a good idea,” she said.
In a statement, Paqui said, “we take safety very seriously and have worked hard to ensure our products are properly and clearly labeled with allergen and safety information.”
The company added the packaging includes a safety disclaimer, noting the chip should not be ingested by people who are sensitive to spicy foods or who are minors, pregnant or have medical conditions.
But still, some students in California ended up in the hospital after participating in the challenge, including three high school students from Lodi.