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Coke, Pepsi may sue CSE
BS Corporate Bureau in New Delhi |
August 06, 2003 08:29 IST
Coca-Cola and Pepsi are contemplating legal action against the Centre for Science and Environment.
"We are exploring various options, including legal recourse," Coca-Cola India president Sanjiv Gupta told newspersons at a press conference organised jointly with PepsiCo India.
Pepsi India CEO Rajiv Bakshi said the firm's products met both American as well as European standards. "All the products are tested in independent, internationally-accredited, scientific laboratories," Bakshi added.
The soft-drink majors demanded that an independent scientific authority be appointed to test ground water as well as bottled water in independent accredited laboratories. "The authority should then come out with the findings," Bakshi said.
"The report of the Centre for Science and Environment is baseless and should be completely disregarded," he added.
Gupta said the same standards applied across the world, and the same products made available. There was no question of multinationals following "double standards" in regard to India as alleged by the centre, he added.
While the food processing ministry collected samples regularly from both the companies, the products were also tested at the gold standard Wimta laboratory in Hyderabad as well as the T&O laboratory in Holland, Gupta said.
The executives admitted that such studies caused a temporary set-back in sales for about a week.
Industry experts explained that the report would not have any significant impact because the season for soft-drinks was nearly over for the year.