. . . another ingredient that is in most cans of soda-pop (especially colas) is one that's way off most folks' "toxin" radar: Phosphoric acid. This is one of the additives that has our Indian brethren so up in arms. According to Wikipedia, this chemical is used to make colas more acidic - giving them a tangy aftertaste.

Not so bad, right?

Well, it might change your mind to know that it's also used for:

*Removing rust from ferrous-metal surfaces. Ever heard of Naval Jelly? That's phosphoric acid at work. And if you know anything about the use of this chemical, it can burn the skin and eyes if not applied and removed with care

*An industrial etching compound for the manufacture of silicon nitride-based products (things like computer chips, I think) - and also used for etching teeth prior to bridging or filling

*Construction cleaning agent used to remove stubborn mineral deposits, hard-water stains, and cement residues

*Garden-variety soldering flux!

Sounds pretty yummy, doesn't it?

I mean, who wouldn't want a chemical in their cola powerful enough to etch their teeth? Now I know why the "urban legend" about Coke removing rust is so prevalent - because it's more or less TRUE! Seriously, I looked it up. Keep reading...


According to the Brietbart report I cited in part 1 of this essay, the propagandists at Big Soda claim that their only interests are the health and well being of soda-drinkers, and that there's nothing whatsoever unsafe about their products. Of course, they're rejecting the evidence that forms the basis of these Indian anti-soda actions (a study by the Center for Science and Environment)...

Also predictably, they have a staunch ally in India's business leadership. According to a related NewsTarget article, both the Confederation of Indian Industry and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry warn that the sweeping bans on soda in all government-related institutions could have a negative impact on that country's economy.

I ask this in response: What about the health consequences of Indian citizens unknowingly gulping hazardous sugars, artificial sweeteners, solvents, pesticides, and rust-inhibitors in their drinks? Don't these have a negative impact on the economy, too?

Spokespersons from both these trade groups claim that the bans are arbitrary, don't balance health concerns with public interests, and may in fact violate India's due process of law statutes. They also protest the swift enaction of these bans based solely on results from an outside entity (the CSE), and without follow-up studies conducted by the Indian government itself...

Hmmm. This sounds exactly like what Big Pharma says whenever the FDA actually stands up and regulates them a bit.

I guess in India, like in the rest of the industrialized world, the rupee reigns supreme.

Rejecting "pop" culture,

William Campbell Douglass II, MD