A popular TikTok challenge has resulted in tragedy for the family of a Massachusetts teen. Boston-based news station WCVB 5 reports that 14-year-old Harris Wolobah passed away last week just hours after taking part in the One Chip Challenge at school.
First launched by Paqui in 2016, the One Chip Challenge involves eating a single tortilla chip that contains Carolina Reaper Pepper and Naga Viper Pepper. The lone tortilla chip is housed in a coffin-shaped box that includes a lengthy warning message on the back.
The warning states that the chip is "intended for adult consumption" and should be kept "out of reach of children."
A medical professional also revealed to WCVB 5 that excessive capsaicin, an ingredient found in the tortilla chip used in the challenge, can result in chest pain or heart palpitations. In this case, an autopsy is still pending.
"Sometimes we see people that will have a lot of chest pain or they'll experience things like palpitations as well. So a whole variety of issues that we're seeing with this One Chip Challenge," Dr. Lauren Rice explained.
In the days following the tragedy, a GoFundMe was created in Wolobah's honor, and is just shy of its goal of $30,000.
Additionally, the most recent Instagram post from the Paqui account, which dates back to March of this year, includes some comments demanding that the company be shut down.
"Teenager lost his life today in Boston. You should be shut down. Disgusting what you do for profit," read one comment.
"Total insanity that this company would be allowed to put out this product," said another user.
Update: Following the death of Harris Wolobah, Paqui is removing the One Chip Challenge product from store shelves, the New York Times reports. “The Paqui One Chip Challenge is intended for adults only, with clear and prominent labeling highlighting the chip is not for children” the brand wrote in a statement. “We have seen an increase in teens and other individuals not heeding these warnings.” Paqui said it was working with stores to pull the product from shelves “out of an abundance of caution.”
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