The responses of young children to Denatonium Benzoate (Bitrex) were observed, in order to assess the potential of this bittering agent in the prevention of accidental poisoning. Thirty-three children aged 17-36 months were offered orange juice containing Bitrex (in a concentration of 10 parts per million). Of the 30 children who took some of this juice, only seven were willing to take more than 10 gm. A variety of negative verbal and non-verbal responses were noted. It is suggested that the highly unpalatable nature of Bitrex makes this compound a useful additive that could well prevent accidental poisoning from household products of mild to moderate toxicity.
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