Add another one to the list of global complaints about that most All-American of American brands, Coca-Cola. Already beleaguered by accusations of human rights violations in Colombia, environmental damage in India and contributing to obesity in Europe, Coke is facing a proposed ban in Russia. This time, the reason is caffeine. Although the drink does not exceed limits set by Russian law, lawmakers claim Coke can be hazardous if consumed in mass quantities. The bill, which also would ban Coke’s top competitor, Pepsi, was introduced by members of the ultra-nationalist Liberal-Democratic faction of the Duma. The good news for Coke is that sources within the government have been quoted in the Russian press claiming the law will never pass—apparently the politicians introducing the law mistook Coke and Pepsi for energy drinks, the sources said. Just a month ago, a communist organization in St. Petersburg tried to organize a boycott against Coke claiming it is trying to break the union in the city’s bottling plant. “The mighty corporation’s owners are trying to suppress the will of the St. Petersburg workers,” the organization behind the boycott said in a written statement. “They insolently ignore their employees’ protests.” Those communists never give up.
—Posted by Jim Lovel