FRANCE: Soft drinks pulled in contamination scare
Thousands of branded and own-label soft drinks, including those made by Orangina Schweppes and Danone, have been recalled in France following contamination of a bottling plant's water source.
More than 100,000 drinks were recalled this weekend, after tests carried out at a bottling plant at Chateauneuf de Gadagne, based in south-east France, showed small traces of the petrol additive, ETBE (Ethyl-Ter-Butyl-Ether), in water its water source.
France's General Directorate for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF) advised consumers on Friday (17 October) not to drink the products. It said that initial analysis indicated only a low level risk to health, however.
The plant is run by Européenne d'Embouteillage, a unit of Orangina Schweppes. Products concerned include its Oasis brand, but also Source des Oliviers bottled water, Taillefine Fiz brand (Danone) fizzy fruit drinks and Champion (Carrefour) and Grand Jury supermarkets' own brand fruit juices.
Orangina Schweppes told just-drinks today (20 October) that not all water wells supplying the plant were affected. It said the problem was a quality issue, rather than a health concern, adding there would be no risk of product shortages.
The origin of the problem remained unknown.
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