A good friend of mine asked me at break today why I drink diet Coke and I really never questioned it before -- I like the taste, it's low cal and I need the caffeine hit in the afternoon. But then I started to think about the corporation behind the beverage. Who am I supporting with my Coke habit? How hypocritical am I to bash the likes of Walmart and MacDonald's, while sipping my beloved Coke.
It took only 10 mins of research tonight to remind myself that Coca-cola are not exactly good corporate citizens. Here are just a few highlights:
They sell a product that's largely the cause of obesity and diabetes.
Drinks sold in poorer countries (where regulations are easily bought) have higher levels of sugar affecting the health of the most vulnerable
They aggressively market to children, especially in schools by selling exclusivity contracts to school boards who are desperate for funding.
They own Disani bottled water which exploits local water supplies and creates millions of tons of garbage.
They are the fathers of brand management, having spent billions of dollars marketing a product they don't produce. Manufacturing is outsourced to deregulated off-shore suppliers who are free to commit a host of anti-union violence and human rights abuses. This is complicity at its worst.
OK then. Time to walk the talk D. Coke is out. xx