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Indonesia Enlists Smelly Fruit Scented Condoms in AIDS Fight

June 18, 2003

The AIDS group DKT Indonesia has begun selling condoms that smell like durian, a spiky local fruit. While foreigners compare the fruit's odor to stale cheese, old gym shoes or a gas leak, many Asians like it. The new condom's reception has "been really good," said Christopher Purdy, country director for Washington-based DKT, an AIDS and family planning organization. "In the first week, we've sold about 130,000 condoms. We're trying to bring a little humor into a serious subject and break down some of the barriers," he said. "For many people, the durian might not be a pleasant smell. But the average Indonesian grows up with that smell and loves that smell." HIV infections in Indonesia have doubled in the past five years to between 80,000 and 120,000 cases, Purdy said.

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Excerpted from:
Associated Press

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