The Coca-Cola Co is to remove a flavouring stabiliser from its global portfolio in the wake of consumer concerns.

The company said yesterday (5 May) it had already stopped using brominated vegetable oil (BVO) in some of its Powerade flavours in the US and will complete the transition for all its US beverages by the end of this year. It said the change “allows us to become consistent with the ingredients we use throughout the world”.

Asked if the change will cover global markets, a spokesperson told just-drinks the entire company “will be BVO free”.

Last year, PepsiCo removed BVO from its Gatorade range after an online petition against the oil attracted 200,000 signatures. PepsiCo said the decision to remove BVO had been pre-planned and was not connected to the petition.

Brominated vegetable oil is used in beverages to distribute flavour evenly though the drink. It is not banned by the US Food and Drink Administration, but reportedly has possible side-effects including neurological disorders and altered thyroid hormones. Coca-Cola is replacing it with sucrose acetate isobutyrate or glycerol ester of rosin, which is used in chewing gum.

In a statement today, PepsiCo said it is “actively working to remove (BVO) from the rest of our product portfolio”.

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