This Summer, Fishermen’s Secret Isn’t A Lure, It’s A Little-known Remedy That Knocks Out Gnats
100-year-old herbal formula in Absorbine Jr. fights bumper crop of swarming pests in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa
EAST LONGMEADOW, Massachusetts – For anyone who loves to be on the water, there’s no better time than June and July. But this year, there’s just one small problem. Very small, in fact. Gnats. Excessive moisture and humidity have produced a bumper crop of the tiny pests, and they’re proving extremely difficult to keep away. So more and more outdoor enthusiasts are turning to an unusual and effective solution – Absorbine Jr.
Readily available at Wal-Mart, drug stores and other retail outlets, Absorbine Jr. is a pain-relief liquid that is applied to sore muscles and joints for immediate relief of aches and pains. But a representative of the company says lately the company has been swarmed with requests for Absorbine Jr. to fight gnats.
"We’re hearing from a lot of folks, especially fishermen and other people who are on or near water, that Absorbine Jr. has an extremely powerful effect on gnats," says Robert J. Wallace, vice president of sales and marketing at W.F. Young, Inc., the company that makes Absorbine Jr. "We do not market or make any claims that Absorbine Jr. helps in this way, but our customers are telling us it is one of the only things that works. And apparently they’re starting to spread the word, because we’re hearing from our retailers that in some cases they can’t keep the product on their shelves!"
Residents of the Midwest began to discover the hidden gnat-battling power in Absorbine Jr. in 2008,
when flooding sent gnat populations soaring. This year, the gnats are back with a vengeance. Illinois, Indiana and Iowa have been especially hard-hit, and, not coincidentally, they are also the areas buzzing about Absorbine Jr.
"One caller to our customer service department said that now a bottle of Absorbine Jr. is as essential to his tackle box as bait and fishing line," Wallace says. "We took that as a pretty high compliment."
Absorbine Jr. is a 100-year-old formula with a distinctive scent that is well-known to loyal users. It appears that the scent, derived from a unique blend of herbal ingredients, is something gnats don’t like. It also helps relieve the itch from insect bites in general – including mosquito bites.
"Now is the time to get outside, get on the water and enjoy the summer," Wallace says. "If we can help people do that and have one less thing to worry about, then we’re going to do everything in our power to make that happen."
Wallace said that in response to the surprising demand for Absorbine Jr., production has been stepped up to ensure that it will remain available in stores.
He added that fishermen aren’t the only group that is using Absorbine Jr. for gnat relief. He says it is also popular with hikers, campers, canoers, golfers and others who spend a significant amount of time in the great outdoors.