FDA Weighs In: Does Soda Cause Cancer?

By Kapitall | March 08, 2012 AAA



Written by Alexander Crawford

An advocacy group recently complained that findings show a chemical used in sodas caused tumors in animals, but the FDA disagrees about the potential health risks.

A person would have to drink more than a thousand cans of soda in a day to match the doses administered in studies that showed links to cancer in rodents, said FDA spokesman Douglas Karas (via Bloomberg).

The chemical of debate is 4-methylimidazole, used in coloring for sodas such as Coke, Pepsi and Dr. Pepper. According to Michael F. Jacobson, executive director of the consumer group Center for Science in the Public Interest, "Coke and Pepsi, with the acquiescence of the FDA, are needlessly exposing millions of Americans to a chemical that causes cancer."

The American Beverage Association called the claims "outrageous" and "nothing more than scare tactics." The FDA's Karas said the FDA has no reason to believe consumers are in danger. (via Bloomberg)

Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in market cap over the last two years for the stocks mentioned below.




Business Section: Investing Ideas

The rumor that soda is a carcinogen has been around for decades, but do you think stories like this will start scaring consumers away? For a look at the soda industry, we list the largest US soft drink-makers trading on U.S. exchanges.

Do you think they will see an aftershock from these rumors? (Click here to access free, interactive tools to analyze these ideas.)

1. Dr Pepper Snapple Group, Inc. (NYSE: DPS): Engages in the manufacture and distribution of non-alcoholic beverages in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Market cap at $8.03B.

2. National Beverage Corp. (Nasdaq: FIZZ): Develops, manufactures, markets, and distributes beverage products in the United States. Market cap at $715.49M.

3. The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO): Distributes, and markets nonalcoholic beverages worldwide. Market cap at $155.62B.

4. Pepsico, Inc. (NYSE: PEP): Engages in the manufacture, marketing, and sale of foods, snacks, and carbonated and non-carbonated beverages worldwide. Market cap at $97.82B.

Disclosure: Kapitall's Alexander Crawford does not own any of the shares mentioned above.

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