Blog: Andy MortonPepsiCo caught in Amazon attack

Andy Morton | 21 November 2014

PepsiCo received high praise when it announced it was to launch its stevia-based Pepsi extension True exclusively on Amazon in the US.

I wrote a whole feature on it and was told by people I spoke to that the move was a clever ploy and the future of niche roll-outs.

Those views may have to be reappraised, however, after environmentalists this week flooded Pepsi True's Amazon page with hundreds of one-star reviews.

The campaign was led by activist group SumOfUs.org and the Rainforest Action Network, who accuse PepsiCo of not doing enough to ensure its palm oil comes from sustainable sources.

PepsiCo, however, is fighting back - it pulled Pepsi True off Amazon but today the beverage is back up. And the company has defended itself against the nearly 3,500 one-star reviews - all of which contain scathing attacks on the company - stating that it is the victim of an “orchestrated effort to post inaccurate information”.

“Our critics would be hard pressed to find many companies that have taken PepsiCo’s holistic approach to land policy, forest stewardship and responsible sourcing,” the company said, adding that it is committed to zero deforestation and to “100% sustainable palm oil” by next year.

What's slightly farcical about the whole situation is that Pepsi True doesn't use palm oil - the target of the attacks was PepsiCo's Doritos brand. That, of course, won't worry the activists, who are chasing any leverage to bring PepsiCo to heel. But, it might be of concern to other global brands that view the Pepsi True launch as a blueprint for beverage launches.

Navigating the Amazon retail jungle has just become a more daunting prospect.

BLOG

Budweiser races to stock Mars bars

For those people looking to the Red Planet as shining utopia away from all things earth, look away now....

NEWS

"Coke Zero's the hero" for Coca-Cola European Partners in 2016 - Analysis 

Analysts have trumpeted Coca-Cola Zero Sugar as well as Coca-Cola European Partners' non-CSD offerings as the group's key growth drivers in 2016....

BLOG

When life gives you lemons, make soap

Bacardi's 42 Below vodka brand has found a novel way to use the lemons left over from cocktail-making: Turn them into liquid soap....

NEWS

PepsiCo rolls out Tropicana Essentials to India

PepsiCo has lined up the launch of its Tropicana Essentials range in India as the company looks to expand its "nutrition" portfolio in the country....

BLOG

Small measures required as Philadelphia soda tax adds up

Philadelphia’s soda tax came into force on Sunday, and is reportedly causing a stir in the city's check-out aisles....

NEWS

Heineken releases colour-change bottles at Miami music festival

Heineken has unveiled new aluminium bottles that turn black under black light....

BLOG

Accolade Wines and a giant of the tennis world

Earlier this month, I was most-kindly invited by Accolade Wines to visit the Royal Albert Hall in London. The reason? They wanted to see a tennis great in action, and then give them a guided tour thro...

just-drinks homepage



Forgot your password?