PepsiCo announced its decision to start offering aspartame-free Diet Pepsi in response to the request of consumers in the United States. The food and beverage company is currently using aspartame for its Diet Pepsi product.
In a statement, Seth Kaufman, senior vice president, Pepsi and flavors portfolio of North America beverages business of Pepsico said, “Diet cola drinkers in the U.S. told us they wanted aspartame-free Diet Pepsi and we’re delivering.”
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PepsiCo said its Diet Pepsi, Caffeine-Free Diet Pepsi, and Wild Cherry Diet Pepsi would be sweetened with a blend of sucralose and acesulfame potassium starting in August.
Aspartame is an artificial sweetener, which became under consumer scrutiny due to reports that it is dangerous substance added to most foods today. The substance is approximately 200 times sweeter than sugar. Beverage companies widely use aspartame to sweeten diet sodas. Based on reports, aspartame causes dizziness, headaches/migraine, weight gains, insomnia, heart palpitations, seizure and even death.
The Coca-Cola Company is also using aspartame in its beverages including Diet Coke, Diet Zero, and Schweppes Diet Lemonade.
PepsiCo, Coca-Cola to remove BVO in beverages
Separately, Coca-Cola and PepsiCo agreed to remove brominated vegetable oil (BVO), a flame retardant chemical from all their beverages in the future.
The beverage companies made the decision following a public pressure to remove BVO. In 2012, Sarah Kavanagh, a 15-year old girl made a petition demanding the removal of BVO from sports drinks such as Gatorade. The petition has 20,000 supporters.
According to Mercola.com, the BVO caused some soda-drinkers to seek medical attention for skin lesions, memory loss, and nerve problems related to overexposure in bromine. Japan and Europe prohibited the use of BVO in beverages and food.
PepsiCo quarterly financial results
Yesterday, PepsiCo reported better-than-expected earnings for the first quarter driven by a strong demand for its Frito-Lay snack products in North America. The company also benefited from the price increases in its beverage business.
During the quarter, PepsiCo reported earnings of $0.83 per share (excluding items) compared with the $0.79 per shared expected by analysts. Its revenue was $12.22 billion, higher than the $12.18 billion consensus estimate.
PepsiCo said its Frito-Lay business generated $3.32 billion, a 3.1% increase. Its revenue from beverage business rose slightly to $4.43 billion.
PepsiCo Hugh Johnston said, “The Americas did terrifically well. Frito-Lay picked up from a volume perspective.”