Coke, Sodastream in spat over exhibit

2012-06-28 22:29

Cape Town - Beverage companies SodaStream and Coca-Cola are at odds over an eco-awareness exhibit at OR Tambo airport in Johannesburg, SodaStream says.

The exhibit, which has been in the restricted domestic departures section since May, shows how many bottles and cans an average family uses in three years.

SodaStream marketing manager Francois Dippenaar said on Thursday that the company filled a large cage with 5 078 bottles or cans collected from the dump, which happened to include Coke, Fanta and Sprite bottles.

"On 11 June we got a cease and desist letter [from Coca-Cola SA] saying we infringe on their trademark rights and contravene Advertising Standards Authority of SA (Asasa) regulations.

"They demanded that we take down the stand and undertake in writing never to do the same thing again."

Dippenaar said the company sent a lawyer's letter back to the company on 18 June, stating it would resist any attempt to stop the display.

"We are going to keep on telling the's not only Coca-Cola brands that were displayed."

Coca Cola SA spokesperson Zipporah Maubane said no further legal action had been pursued.

She could not comment on whether the company would take the case further and no complaint had been lodged with Asasa.

According to SodaStream, only about 25% of all beverage plastics and cans were recycled internationally.

The company had been promoting its re-usable plastic bottles and self-carbonating drinks machine as an environmentally-friendly alternative.

Maubane said Coca Cola was a leader in recycling and sustainable packaging.

The company was a founder and member of Petco, a local polyethylene terephthalate recycling company.

It was also a partner of the Collect-a-Can initiative.

  • Eugene - 2012-06-29 00:12

    Most cans are created, marketed and sold by the Coca-Cola corporation! Great advertising for Sodastream ;-)

  • zaatheist - 2012-06-29 04:07

    Coke, SAB and all those who sell products in cans and plastic bottles should be required to levy a deposit on each container, say 50 cents which can be reclaimed on return. They used to do that in South Africa and they do in the USA. Adding the deposit ensures that none will be left lying around as, if they have real value, they will be collected, the deposit redeemed, and the container recycled. Collect-a-can is a BS smokescreen to stop the imposition of deposits.

  • mmatzener - 2012-06-29 06:32

    Zipporah Maubane should leave her office in the Big City and take a drive through the dorpies of South Africa to see what her company is doing to the environment here.... The so-called environmentally concerned Coca Cola company is slowly turning rural South African towns into one big advertisement for their products. They offer to erect advertising boards for small struggling businesses at no cost provided their logo is displayed as well. This is an acceptable and almost philanthropic proposal.... except that they are plastering Coca Cola adverts all over the buildings. Some shops have up to 8 huge Coca Cola signs on one little shop. They have now started to paint entire buildings brigh red with enormous Coca Cola bottles all over the building. This is giving our rural towns the appearance of run-down slums.... but apparently the Coca Cola corporation is aiming to be associated with slums. Our village already looks like Elsies River.... This hypocrisy is typical of companies who get too big for their boots and disregard aesthetical standards and respect for other people. I wish Ms Maubane would go to Clarens and have a good look at what artistic signwriting can do for the environment. I have a DVD of a number of these buildings in the Western Cape if anyone is interested.

  • deabreu - 2012-06-29 07:25

    Coca Cola needs to grow up and stop complaining. No-one would even know about the Coke bottles, that are in fact everywhere.This won't affect Coke at all, since I have a Soda Stream and it make zero difference to my consumption of Coke or anything else. It is just giving Coke a bad name. Bullies.

  • fanie.gerber.98 - 2012-06-29 08:06

    If you are the biggest softdrink brand in the world - your rubbish pile is going to be the biggest

  • don.quioxte.3 - 2012-06-29 08:17

    Coke, take your thin skinned bullying somewhere else. Has your idiocy no limits at all. To your ridiculous litigators: This is not the USA. Go home.

  • jason.dutoit - 2012-06-29 10:25

    they are claiming that the average family uses 4.63 bottles and cans a day. i don't buy that number.

  • fanie.gerber.98 - 2012-06-29 11:57

    Like The Spear incident -if they kept quiet no one will have made the connection

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