Coca-Cola, PepsiCo deny using titanium dioxide after controversial report claims they use potentially harmful colorant in its US SoBe and Powerade drinks

LOS ANGELES , June 16, 2014 () – After a report was released alleging that PepsiCo Inc. and the Coca-Cola Co. use titanium dioxide (TIO2) in their SoBe and Powerade Drinks, the two companies are denying they use the colorant, Beverage Daily reported June 12.

Friend of the Earth (FOE) released the controversial report on May 21, titled "Tiny Ingredients, Big Risks," which talked about the drastic increase of “unregulated, unlabelled ‘nanofood’ products” within the past six years in the U.S.

In an interview with BeverageDaily.com, PepsiCo spokesman Jeff Dahncke said PepsiCo’s SoBe Elixir Orange Cream does not use include beverage brightener and whitener.

“I’m not sure where Friends of the Earth sourced the information,” he said.

Petro Kacur, Coca-Cola’s media relations director, said that after further investigating the claims, it was concluded that titanium dioxide is used in Powerade products in the U.S.

This comes after several U.S. dairy companies mentioned in the FOE report denied similar claims, like Dannon and Lactalis American Group.

Author Ian Illuminato claims that nanomaterials, mostly in the form of TIO2, are found in 94 products on the market today, ranging from doughnuts to soft drinks.

Peer-reviewed evidence has shown that nanoparticles are harmful to humans and the environment, he added.

The colorant has a high chemical reactivity and bioactivity, which poses toxicity risks; they are more than likely to enter cells, tissues and organs, and serve as risks to one’s immune system, along with “long term pathological effects,” said Illuminato.

Other food and beverage companies cited in the report include Unilever, Nestle and Kraft.

The primary source of this article is Beverage Daily, Montpellier, France, on June 12, 2014. Click here to read the primary source's full version of the article.

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