Drink Savvy, a Boston-based company, has created a material that changes color when it comes in contact with a drug-spiked drink.
Founder Mike Abramson said he plans to use the discovery to create a set of products, including cups, glassware, stirrers and straws, that he hopes will be used to help reduce date rape.
"Within the past three years, three of my very close friends and myself have been the unwitting victims of being drugged," Abramson said in a fundraising video.
The company is trying to raise $50,000 so it can produce the cups and straws and begin selling them online, according to a fundraising appeal posted on the website Indiegogo.
Date rape drugs, including the three most common, GHB, Ketamine and Rohypnol, are odorless, colorless and tasteless, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, making them difficult to detect.
Abramson estimates that more than a million people every year are drugged and sexually assaulted. In the video he said he hopes his product will "prevent someone you care about from possibly being the victim of drug-facilitated sexual assault."
Last year, Israeli scientists announced the development of a sensor that looks like a straw or a stirrer that can detect two of the most commonly used date rape drugs with 100 percent accuracy.