Heard of the recent news on pesticides in Cola and Pepsi right?
This post is about my opinion on these products and the alternative we have.
All my life, I've consumed these products minimum number of times. If I remember correctly, I've consumed both Coca Cola and Pepsi just once or twice, and their other products, fanta, sprite etc few more times. (Have consumed Maaza, Slice, AquaFina and Kinley a number of times). Because I'm not a regular user of these products I may not have enough authority to comment on them, but still, I'm proceeding.
I understand and agree that these soft drinks are sweet, served chilled, hence quench your thirst. Pesticides or not I’m still unable to understand what value addition these drinks have to our health. Technically speaking, these are just water with sweeteners and preservatives. They contain phosphoric acid and other chemicals. In no way these drinks contribute to health factor.
Then why people drink them?
The sole reason they’re popular is because of the marketing strategies of these companies. In villages where water is not available, soft drinks are available. Every cricketer and film star say drinking these aerated beverages gives you lots of benefits. They’re made available in easy to carry containers and bottles and sold with special offers, promos or discounts. As a result, we find everyone buying these drinks at a price more than 10 times their production cost.
Because these cola companies are financially robust, have great marketing strategies and experience, they’ve succeeded in creating a hype and convincing people into drinking their products. As a result, they make profit, a huge share of which is passed out to their home country, USA indirectly affecting Indian economy.
They’re able to suppress any voice raised against them by activists, and get political and legal backing for their activities. Courtesy our corrupt politicians and international agreement we’ve signed, we’ve to watch helpless while they exploit the resources and money from our country.
From any foreign business entity, it would be foolishness to expect that they’re here to take care of our people and environment. They’re here to make money and they’ll be here as long as they can make money.
India has rich natural resources and has enough materials to produce natural drinks and replace these colas completely. But the biggest problem is that those who sell local drinks are completely unorganized. They operate in small areas individually. Some times they operate under unhygienic conditions which need to be checked. They need to be networked and brought under a common umbrella. We should develop a mechanism to collect process and market these local drinks as effectively as soft drinks. Organizations like AMUL and State level Milk Federations (Like KMF in Karnataka) are selling milk by products as cold drinks but there’re many sections which needs to be attended and supported.
We should change our approach and realize the benefits of these drinks. We silently pay the MRP (plus cold storage charge plus service charge if levied) for the overpriced aerated and sweetened water, but bargain for 50 paisa with the street side coconut water vendor. He can’t print a MRP on the tender coconut or employ Sachin Tendulkar to tell you that his product is superior. Use your senses.
I’m not saying that Cola Majors be thrown out of India. Their sales and distribution network is providing employment to thousands of people. My only request is use your senses and logic before falling pray to their advertising and marketing strategies.
This post salutes Gopichand Pullela, the badminton star who refused to endorse Cola companies.
Let me know what you think on these.
Do you like Pepsi?
Coco Fresco: Hyderabad has got a new concept for selling coconut water * branding tender coconut * Upadhya's tender coconut opener *