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May 5, 2014

Coca-Cola’s Powerade drops controversial drink ingredient

(Continued)

NEW YORK —

Earlier this year, for instance, Subway said it would remove an ingredient dubbed the “yoga mat chemical” from its breads. The ingredient, azodicarbonamide, is approved for use by the FDA and can be found in a wide variety of breads.

The petitioner, Vani Hari of FoodBabe.com, said she targeted Subway because of its image for serving healthy food.

Likewise, brominated vegetable oil can also be found in several other drinks. But the Mississippi teenager, Sarah Kavanagh, said she targeted Gatorade and Powerade in petitions because they’re designed for athletes, who are likely more concerned about what they’re putting into their bodies. Her Powerade petition had more than 59,000 online supporters while the Gatorade one had more than 200,000.

“Consumers are coming together quickly and efficiently to influence the world’s biggest beverage companies in an unprecedented manner,” said Pulin Modi, senior campaign manager for Change.org.

As Americans cut back on soda, sports drinks have become more important for Coca-Cola and PepsiCo Inc., which is based in Purchase, New York.

Although Coca-Cola has long dominated rival PepsiCo on the soda front, it lags the company in the growing sports drink category. According to the industry tracker Beverage Digest, Gatorade has 64 percent of the sports drink market.

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