India Says Coke, Pepsi Products Safe to Drink

Three weeks after an environmental organization created a furor in India by claiming that soft drinks made by Coca-Cola and Pepsi contained dangerously high levels of pesticides, the nation’s government proclaimed the products safe. Health Minister Sushma Swaraj said today that the government had tested the soft drinks cited by the Indian NGO Center for Science and the Environment and found pesticide levels to be “well within the [established] safety limits.” In a study issued earlier this month, CSE charged that 12 brands made by the two companies contained up to 45 times more pesticides than permitted under European standards and could pose serious health threats. In the ensuing uproar, the Indian parliament banned the companies’ drinks from its cafeteria and protestors smashed soft drink bottles across the country. Despite today’s announcement that the soda is safe, Pepsi said it will use bottled water in its fountain Pepsi in India from now on.