Tag Archives | Coca-Cola

What Coke Contains

CocaCola C2Kevin Ashton describes exactly what goes into the cans of coke he buys at his local supermarket in Los Angeles. Do you still want to drink this stuff?

The Vons grocery store two miles from my home in Los Angeles, California sells 12 cans of Coca-Cola for $6.59 — 54 cents each. The tool chain that created this simple product is incomprehensibly complex.

Each can originated in a small town of 4,000 people on the Murray River in Western Australia called Pinjarra. Pinjarra is the site of the world’s largest bauxite mine. Bauxite is surface mined — basically scraped and dug from the top of the ground. The bauxite is crushed and washed with hot sodium hydroxide, which separates it into aluminum hydroxide and waste material called red mud. The aluminum hydroxide is cooled, then heated to over a thousand degrees celsius in a kiln, where it becomes aluminum oxide, or alumina.

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Woman Dies From Drinking Too Much Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola Glas mit EisLet’s face it, drinking Coke just isn’t good for you. Not many people are going to die from it, but on the other hand why risk damaging your health at all? BBC News reports on the Kiwi who took her addiction to Coca-Cola way too far:

Drinking large quantities of Coca-Cola was a “substantial factor” in the death of a 30-year-old woman in New Zealand, a coroner has said.

Natasha Harris, who died three years ago after a cardiac arrest, drank up to 10 litres of the fizzy drink each day.

This is twice the recommended safe limit of caffeine and more than 11 times the recommended sugar intake.

Coca-Cola had argued that it could not be proved its product had contributed to Ms Harris’ death.

The coroner’s verdict came on the day Coca-Cola Sales said sales in Europe and China fell in the last quarter of 2012, and warned of a “volatile” year to come.

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Coca-Cola’s Superbowl Commercial Is A Microcosm Of The Idea Of America

If you want to understand our culture, watch our commercials. Via Salon, Michael Shaw writes:

With the West in an endless struggle in the Middle East not just for resources but mindshare, we see the Coke bottle — the symbol of globalization and American commercialism — sitting there in the hot sand, the object of desire for, first of all, a hapless Gulf prince/camel jockey. Resonating with [the looming] immigration debate, we then have a Hispanic desperado evoking the desert as if the province of thirsty Mexicans looking north.

It’s funny but not-so-funny when you consider that what America has to offer is, in fact, a mirage. What the ad people realize I’m sure is that, after more than a decade in Iraq and Afghanistan, the idea of “quenching” — no matter how much you “put down” the Arabs and Islamists — couldn’t be more ironic.

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Bolivia To Banish Coca-Cola To Mark Mayan End Of Capitalism?

Apparently the “expelling of Coca-Cola” from Bolivia will be metaphorical rather than literal. Still, I feel as if we finally have a definitive answer as to what the end of the Mayan calendar means. Via Forbes:

David Choquehuanca, the minister in question, explained that Coca-Cola will be expelled from Bolivia on the same day that the Mayan calendar enters a new cycle–December 21. According to Choquehuanca, the date marks the end of capitalism and the start of a culture of life in community-based societies.

Although it may make sense for them to ban Coca-Cola–which screams America and, therefore, capitalism–it’s not the first time that a US company had trouble to find ground in Bolivia. After trying for years to conquer Bolivians, McDonald’s withdrew from the country in the early 2000s for not being able to turn a profit there.

The decision of Coca-Cola’s ban in Bolivia came in a time when the country is pledging to legalize the consumption of coca leaves, which are notoriously processed clandestinely into cocaine, and were declared an illegal narcotic by the UN in 1961, along with cocaine, opium and morphine, in spite of its consumption being a centuries-old tradition there, strongly rooted in the beliefs of various indigenous groups.

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Would You Like Cancer With Your Coke?

CocaColaBottle background freeThe Coca-Cola Company doesn’t like it, but it’s removing the caramel coloring from Coke due to California declaring the compound to be a carcinogen. Via WBUR:

When the state of California added the compound 4-methylimidazole, also known as 4-MI or 4-MEI, to its list of known carcinogens in 2011, it created a problem for the soda industry.

The caramel color they used to give colas that distinctive, brown hue contained levels of 4-MI that would have warranted a cancer warning label on every can sold in the state.

And this wasn’t the industry’s only challenge. The Center for Science in the Public Interest petitioned the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to ban ammonia-sulfite caramel color. It’s a request the CSPI repeated this week after finding 4-MI in samples of Coke and Pepsi.

“This is nothing more than CSPI scare tactics, and their claims are outrageous,” writes the American Beverage Association in a statement released to the media.

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Did Coca-Cola Trash The Grand Canyon’s Plastic Bottle Ban?

It’s good to see the mainstream media calling foul on some corporate dirty work. Karin Kline writes in the LA Times:

240px-The_Coca-Cola_Company_logoGrand Canyon National Park was just about to impose a ban on single-use plastic water bottles — the most common form of trash found along its trails — when the plan was suddenly put on hold, the New York Times reported. The paper raises the possibility that Coca-Cola Co. was able to get a sympathetic ear at the National Parks Foundation because the company, which bottles Dasani water, is a major donor.

This isn’t a radical new idea. Zion National Park already has a ban. The park provides “hydration stations” for people to refill their reusable bottles, as the Grand Canyon park would have.

The story included a strange comment from a Coca-Cola spokeswoman, who said that bans on single-use plastic bottles are never the answer, and that recycling would resolve the problem.

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Osama Was Crazy About American Soft Drinks, Apparently

soda-pop-bottle-carton-coca-cola-things-go-better_400191225010A nugget from a Bloomberg article — Abbottabad shopkeepers say that the men revealed to be bin Laden’s aides would regularly purchase bulk quantities of both Pepsi and Coke. It seems his hatred for the infidels was matched only by his love for our sweet, sweet carbonated colas.

The two polite Pakistanis who helped Osama bin Laden hide in the shadow of their country’s army bought bulk food orders, chose major brands and equally favored Pepsi and Coke, neighbors and a local shopkeeper said.

The men called themselves Akbar and Rashid Khan and they owned the fortified home where U.S. commandos killed bin Laden in an early morning raid May 2. They did the daily shopping in the Pashtu-language accents of Waziristan, a region on the Afghan border, said grocer Anjum Qaisar, 27, who works 150 meters from the compound.

“I was curious about why they bought so much food, but I did not want to be rude by asking” such a personal question, Qaisar said.

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Caramel Coloring In Coke Causes Cancer

Photo Credit: Jorge Bach, CSPI

Photo Credit: Jorge Bach, CSPI

A few days ago it was revealed that diet soda can trigger strokes in regular drinkers of the sweet fizzy beverages. Now the Center for Science in the Public Interest is petitioning the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to prohibit what it says is carcinogenic “caramel coloring” (that is, not real caramel but synthetic, chemical “caramel”):

The “caramel coloring” used in Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and other foods is contaminated with two cancer-causing chemicals and should be banned, according to a regulatory petition filed today by the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

In contrast to the caramel one might make at home by melting sugar in a saucepan, the artificial brown coloring in colas and some other products is made by reacting sugars with ammonia and sulfites under high pressure and temperatures. Chemical reactions result in the formation of 2-methylimidazole and 4 methylimidazole, which in government-conducted studies caused lung, liver, or thyroid cancer or leukemia in laboratory mice or rats.

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