Coca-Cola Co has defended its Vitaminwater brand against questions raised by Australian consumer publication Choice

Coca-Cola Co has defended its Vitaminwater brand against questions raised by Australian consumer publication Choice

The Coca-Cola Co has defended its Vitaminwater brand against questions raised by Australian consumer publication Choice over the health credentials of the brand.

In an article published on 7 January, Choice claimed that, while vitamin-enhanced waters "might appear a healthier alternative than their store-fridge counterparts", the nutritional information reveals "they are really just cordials with a few added vitamins".

The publication targeted Coca-Cola's Vitaminwater in particular, noting that, despite marketing that asserts the drink's health benefits, the beverage contains "enough sugar to provide an average woman with about a third of her recommended daily intake".

In response, a spokesperson for Coca-Cola Australia told just-drinks today (12 January) that it is committed to providing "factual, meaningful and understandable" information about all of its products.

"All of our labels are in compliance with FSANZ (Food Standards Australia & New Zealand) regulatory requirements," the spokesperson said.

"In 2010, after listening to our consumers here in Australia, we rolled out a new low-calorie formulation across the Vitaminwater range, in which the kilojules have been reduced per 500ml bottle to under 395kj (or under 95 calories)," the spokesperson added. "The new formulation started to go into stores at the end of 2010 and may take a couple of months of the previous stock to be sold through."

This is not the first time Coca-Cola has been questioned about the content of its Vitaminwater brand. In July, the soft drinks giant failed to win the dismissal of a lawsuit filed by the Center for Science in the Public Interest in the US in which it was accused of making "deceptive and unsubstantiated" claims on bottles of its Vitaminwater brand.