In the discussion about copyright below, Mithrandir brought up the subject of Trade Secrets. Which is coincidental, because Coke and Pepsi are having a bit of a problem with their own trade secrets surrounding the secret recipes of their respective colas.
India’s top court asks Coca-Cola and Pepsico to disclose contents of soft drinks
India’s top court has asked Coca-Cola and Pepsi to disclose the ingredients in the soft drinks they sell here amid allegations the drinks contain high levels of pesticide.
The Supreme Court notice on Friday came days after a New Delhi-based independent research body said it found samples of Coke and Pepsi contained pesticide residue that was 24 times above the limits set by the Bureau of Indian Standards.
The Center for Science and Environment in New Delhi said it carried out tests on 57 samples taken from 11 soft drink brands made by Coca-Cola India and PepsiCo India.
Firstly, it’s unlikely (but not improbable) that the colas have that level of pesticide.
My own opinion is that this is far more politically motivated than motivated by any regard for public health.
That being said, it’s going to be interesting to see how these American companies respond for the call to their recipes. Because they would really prefer not to have these recipes get out into the public.
UPDATE: In the comments, Prasanna points out that there is likely pesticides in the colas, but not due to the cola companies. They point to a Financial Times article which concludes:
Almost any product in India, from tap water to milk, contains traces of toxins due to overuse of pesticides by farmers. This seeps into local ground water, which is used in more than 80 per cent of soft drinks.
Prasanna’s conclusions are as follows:
- Yes there are pesticides in all our products and the drinking water in India, which should worry us
- Yes the government limits for pesticide residues in our products are way to low (and haven’t developed much in the last years since the last scandal)
- Blaming Pepsi and Coca Cola is an anti-western populist agenda that has nothing to do with the problem. Even the study of CSE does no comparison to our traditional drinks as Tea (because normal Water in Tea or Coffee is less filtered than the one in Pepsi!)
- There should be a new independent study that compares comparable products!
- It seems to me way safer to drink Pepsi than to get a tea in India
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