The ban relates to Coke Zero ingredients Methyl Para-hydroxybenzoate and Sodium Methyl Para-hydroxybenzoate

The ban relates to Coke Zero ingredients Methyl Para-hydroxybenzoate and Sodium Methyl Para-hydroxybenzoate

The Coca-Cola Co has insisted that its products are safe to drink despite a ban in Taiwan on the importation of some Coke Zero ingredients.

Methyl Para-hydroxybenzoate and Sodium Methyl Para-hydroxybenzoate, which are used to make Coke Zero, are banned in Taiwan due to their alleged side effects. The preservatives are said to cause "stomach upsets and raise female hormone levels", the Shanghai Daily reported.

The soft drinks giant said today (18 July), however, that it "maintains the highest quality standards" for its beverages and that its products are "safe for consumption". The preservatives are permitted by many countries including mainland China, Hong Kong and the US, Coca-Cola noted.

"These ingredients are widely used as a permitted additive in food and drink, but Taiwan's laws and regulations do not permit their use in carbonated drinks," the company said in a statement.

According to the Hong Kong Commercial Daily, Coca-Cola Taiwan has said that the batch of Coke Zero ingredients were transported to Taiwan "by mistake." The company said its products in Taiwan did not use the preservative.