Joseph Pedott, man behind the ch-ch-ch Chia Pet, dies at 91

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Joseph Pedott, man behind the ch-ch-ch Chia Pet, dies at 91 Joseph Pedott, the promoting govt who popularized the Chia Pet, died June 22 at age 91.

Joseph Pedott, man behind the ch-ch-ch Chia Pet, dies at 91

Joseph Pedott, the promoting govt who popularized the Chia Pet, died June 22 at age 91.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

For those who picked up gardening over the pandemic like I did, we’re not alone. Google searches for the time period houseplants hit an all-time excessive in 2020. And so many younger folks on the web have turn into proud plant homeowners that some are even saying…

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #1: Canine are the brand new kids. Crops are the brand new pets.

SHAPIRO: However for those who have been round within the Nineteen Eighties, this isn’t new. Crops have all the time been pets.

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UNIDENTIFIED MUSICAL ARTIST: (Singing) Cha-cha-cha chia.

UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #2: Chia pets, the pottery that grows.

JUANA SUMMERS, HOST:

The Chia Pet was popularized by advert exec Joseph Pedott. The person behind that iconic advertising marketing campaign died on June 22.

SHAPIRO: Initially from Chicago, Pedott’s mom died when he was 13. He fled from his abusive father when he was 16 and lived at a YMCA. A Chicago nonprofit helped put him via faculty, and he went on to discovered his personal promoting company in California.

SUMMERS: In 1977, Pedott was at a housewares conference when he was launched to the terracotta figures with chia seeds sprouting from them like fur.

SHAPIRO: He later instructed the College of Illinois, the primary one I ever noticed was very crude. It had scorch marks from the oven, and solely three of its legs might contact the floor without delay, however I favored it. Pedott purchased the rights and stock for $25,000.

SUMMERS: And you do not want us to let you know Pedott’s advertising marketing campaign, with its irresistible jingle, was a viral hit. Within the years since, Chia Pets have shipped in a wide range of shapes.

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UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #3: And have a good time with nation music nice Willie Nelson Chia Pet…

UNIDENTIFIED MUSICAL ARTIST: (Singing) Cha-cha-cha chia.

UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #3: …And your favourite painter, Bob Ross Chia Pet.

SHAPIRO: And artists on-line are making crazier and crazier Chia Pet-inspired artwork, just like the Chia Pet automotive.

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UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #4: I’ve all the time wished a Chia Pet that was large enough to drive round, so I made this.

SHAPIRO: All through his life, Pedott remained grateful to the social companies that supported him as a child. And together with his Chia earnings, he helped fund applications for low-income, first-generation faculty college students. Joe Pedott was 91.

(SOUNDBITE OF TWO DOOR CINEMA CLUB SONG, “SOMETHING GOOD CAN WORK”)

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