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Mortein is an Australian brand of household insecticide owned by British company Reckitt Benckiser. Together with its sister product Aerogard, a popular insect repellent, Mortein has become something of a household name in Australia, and it is marketed internationally. The brand has been represented in television commercials by cartoon antagonist, Louie the Fly, drawn and animated by Geoffry Morgan Pike since 1957. In a jingle created by Bryce Courtenay it was used in animated TV commercials since 1962, he proudly sings of his own dirtiness, claiming to be afraid of no-one except "the man with the can of Mortein."
Mortein "Insect Seeking Fly Spray" uses the active ingredients Allethrin (2.09 g/kg) and Resmethrin (0.39 g/kg), both Pyrethroid neuro-toxins which are considered generally safe in typical doses, although one study have found an association between exposure to pyrethroids and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in male, but not female children. Another study found an association between exposure to pyrethroids and the prevalence of biochemical markers for ADHD in developing mice. Pyrethroids break down in the environment after one or two days. Mortein is also available in New Zealand and India. It is a very popular insecticide brand in Pakistan Reckitt Benckiser Pakistan Limited.
Music and lyrics
The music and lyrics were written by James Joseph White and the copyright of the music and lyrics was held by him until his death. The copyright then was inherited by his relatives. The copyright of the jingle is registered with the (Australasian Performing Right Association LTD) (A.P.R.A).
Louie the Fly
The company is well-known of its popular, largely animated villanous mascot "Louie the Fly", in the popular Australian television commercial, the character and ditty was sung by Ross Higgins, best known as Ted Bullpitt in Kingswood Country.
- "Mortein". Retrieved 19 July 2016.
- Wagner-Schuman, M; Richardson, JR; Auinger, P; Braun, JM; Lanphear, BP; Epstein, JN; Yolton, K; Froehlich, TE. "Association of pyrethroid pesticide exposure with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in a nationally representative sample of U.S. children". Environ Health. 14: 44. doi:10.1186/s12940-015-0030-y. PMC 4458051. PMID 26017680.
- Richardson, JR; Taylor, MM; Shalat, SL; Guillot, TS 3rd; Caudle, WM; Hossain, MM; Mathews, TA; Jones, SR; Cory-Slechta, DA; Miller, GW. "Developmental pesticide exposure reproduces features of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder". FASEB J. 29: 1960–72. doi:10.1096/fj.14-260901. PMC 4415012. PMID 25630971.
- fly spray fast knockdown 200G mortein - Woolworths Online Archived 2007-05-19 at Archive.is
- Reckitt Benckiser India: Hold Archived 2008-10-21 at the Wayback Machine.
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