PepsiCo Removes Flame Retardant From Gatorade After Successful Online Petition


PepsiCo’s Gatorade contains brominated vegetable oil (BVO) that the corporation claims is used to keep the citrus flavor from separating within the liquid.

Sarah Kavanagh, a 15 year old from Mississippi, began a petition to have PepsiCo remove BVO from Gatorade because the ingredient is used as a flame retardant. Kavanagh’s petition entitled “Gatorade: Don’t put flame retardant chemicals in sports drinks!”, stated: The other day, I Googled “brominated vegetable oil.” It was the last time I drank Orange Gatorade. I found out that this “BVO” is a controversial flame retardant chemical that is in some Gatorade drinks! Who wants to drink that? Not me!”

Kavanagh thanked the more than 200,000 supporters of her petition: “Thank you all for your support. When I went to to start my petition, I thought it might get a lot of support because no one wants to gulp down flame retardant, especially from a drink they associate with being healthy. But with Gatorade being as big as they are, sometimes it was hard to know if we’d ever win. This is so, so awesome. Companies like Gatorade put so much thought into marketing. As someone who loves to drink their products, I’m so glad they’re making strides to put as much consideration into their customers health.”

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was deemed generally safe in 1958. During the 1970s, BVO was restricted in its use as a food additive with a concentration of 15ppm. The FDA said that BVO is an interim food additive in the US and completely permissible in Canada. BVO has been banned in Japan and India while the European Union has not approved the substance for human use.

After the FDA approved BVO for use in products, adverse effects began to be reported. Reactions to the chemical include:

• Production of bromoderma lesions
• Memory loss
• Tremors
• Fatigue
• Loss of muscle coordination
• Headaches
• Ptosis of the eye

BVO is also used by soft drink corporations to keep the carbonated drinks from becoming combustible.

PepsiCo describes BVO as a “widely used by beverage makers to help keep flavoring oils well blended. Since oil does not mix well with water, emulsifiers [like BVO] help dissolve and keep the flavor oils evenly distributed throughout the beverage. BVO, or brominated vegetable oil, is used in very low levels in the production of select flavors of Gatorade (all ingredients are listed in descending order by weight).”

Read the full article at Occupy Corporatism