Coca-Cola Accused of Tobacco Industry-Like Deception in Lawsuit

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Coca-Cola Co. was sued by activists who compare the beverage giant’s advertising tactics to the tobacco industry’s past efforts in minimizing the health effects of its products and targeting children to replenish the ranks of its customers.

The nonprofit Praxis Project seeks to stop Coke and the Washington-based American Beverage Association from deceptive advertising of sugary drinks, particularly to children, and for the disclosure of documents related to their impact on health. Studies have linked sugary drinks to obesity, Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, the group said.

The lawsuit comes as drinks’ manufacturers seek to fend off regulatory assaults on multiple fronts. The U.K. is pressing ahead with a tax on sugary drinks over the objections of the producers, following the example of France, Mexico and Hungary. In the U.S., cities including San Francisco and Chicago have also introduced taxes on sweet drinks, citing what they say is a disproportionate impact on residents’ health. – READ MORE

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