Coca-Cola’s (completely self-inflicted) transparency woes continue — this time in Australia.
Today’s The Age newspaper has the details.
- “Coca-Cola is bankrolling a campaign to focus the discussion about obesity in Australia on exercise and away from diet as the solution to the health epidemic”
- “Last August, Coca-Cola’s global boss promised to publish all financing of health groups and research globally after revelations of its activities by the The New York Times. Within six weeks it disclosed that the soft drink giant had given $US21.8 million ($30.5 million) to fund research and $US 96.8 million to fund what it calls “health and wellbeing partnerships” in the United States. More than six months later, no such disclosures have been made in Australia.”
- “Exercise Is Medicine Australia was launched in 2011 at the General Practitioner Conference and Exhibition in Sydney with a presentation by EIM global executive council member Steven Blair, who as vice-president of the Global Energy Balance Network was involved in a funding controversy that engulfed Coca-Cola in the US last year. Dr Blair, who has said there is “virtually no compelling evidence” that fast food and sugary drinks caused obesity, has received more than $US3.5 million ($4.9 million) from Coca-Cola since 2008, according to The New York Times.”
- “A spokeswoman for Coca-Cola South Pacific said it would reveal all its Australian grants and gifts “in the coming months”.
- “Marion Nestle is at the University of Sydney as a Charles Perkins Centre Professorial Visiting Fellow from New York University. She told Fairfax Media: “Coca-Cola promptly delivered on its transparency promise in the US with riveting results. Many health organizations were surprised to learn they were funded by a sugary drink company. “I’m hoping Australian health organizations will ask the company to provide the best list it can as soon as possible. You will find it fascinating.”
- “Fairfax Media can reveal that the Coca-Cola Foundation in the US, which is the company’s philanthropic arm, donated $US1.1 million ($1.5 million) to organizations in Australia in 2015. This is on top of any money donated by the Coca-Cola Foundation Australia, which is jointly supported by Coca-Cola South Pacific and Coca-Cola Amatil.”