Leading soft drink companies, including Pepsi and Coca Cola, have denied claims that products in polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles contain harmful toxins.
A study conducted by All India Institute of Hygiene and Public Health (AIIH&PH) under Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB) of the Union Health Ministry has revealed that PET bottles of soft drinks contain five types of toxins. The report showed increased amount of leaching with rise in room temperature.
It also found heavy metals such as antimony, lead, chromium and cadmium and Di (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate in PET bottles used by the soft drink firms.
Commenting on the allegations, a PepsiCo India spokesperson said, "We have received no intimation or a copy of the cited test reports. Without an understanding of the methodology used, we would be unable to comment on the reports."
Assuring the safety of their PET bottles, PepsiCo said: "We would like to emphatically reiterate that our products comply with the permissible limits for heavy metals as laid down by the food safety and standards regulations in India."
Similarly, Coca Cola India also said that they will be able to comment in details on receiving the report.
"We have not received any communication or notice from any of the concerned government departments pertaining to testing of our products and have learnt about the subject only through the said newspaper report," a spokesperson said.