Water and coca cola/pepsi.

So, I went looking around a bit after reading oldhen‘s post on Coke. Happened to land on this page on the Coca Cola company’s website, where the following question and answer appear.

How much water is used to make one liter of Coca‑Cola?
Water is the main ingredient in our finished products. It also plays an essential role in manufacturing for washing and rinsing packaging, cleaning mixing tanks and piping, steam production and cooling. On average, in 2002, about 3.12 liters of water were needed to make one liter of Coca‑Cola products.

Vandana Shiva claims 1 litre of coke requires 9 litres of water. I suppose the real answer is somewhere in between. Say, 6 litres. Nevertheless, it is a significant quantity of water wasted on a pretty useless product.

Rather than ban the drink for a flimsy reason, it’s probably a better idea to price it out of easy affordability, by making water much more costlier to the company. I am pretty sure sales will tank if a 300 ml bottle sells for Rs 15 or more.

Here’s a wicked thought – make the cost of water for coke’s bottling plant = cost of water for a kinley 1 litre bottle. 🙂


Posted on August 22, 2006, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. I agree…the only way to do it is economically, not the moral police way…

    I also think that until we can say, definitely, that water doesn’t contain pesticides, we have no moral authority to ban colas….

    • Agree. I am not totally against bans/moral policing, but I don’t think this is a case that warrants it.

      • Dude…what do you have against cola companies…??
        Can a similar research be carried out for Beer … ?

      • Sunil B

        Dude…what do you have against cola companies…??
        Can a similar research be carried out for Beer … ?

      • Re: Sunil B

        Why, do you think they are holier than thou? 🙂

        Maybe you could do a similar research for beer. That is more your terrain, no? 🙂

      • Re: Sunil B

        I agree with the question about beer. I would be willing to bet that it takes even more water to produce beer. Discussions such as this get out of control. I gave someone that I don’t even know a 2-hour car ride tonight, because a fellow-worker asked me to. She lectured me that it takes “40 times that amount in water” to make a Coke, and that I’m some kind of bumb to be drinking it. Nothing wrong with her drinking beer though. I’m not condemning beer either, for the record. It’s all a matter of individual preference.

        It ends up getting implied as if this water was boiled off or turned into sewage. The so-called facts soon become laughable. I can’t imagine that any manufacturing process doesn’t require the use of water, especially once you include heating, cooling and especially cleaning. Whether for cleaning the building or running the plumbing for restrooms, ALL industries use water.

        Can ANYONE state for a “fact” that more water is required to make Coke vs. Budweiser or even bottled Lipton Tea or Meadow Gold milk? I don’t think so. Should government take steps to remove all of these products? Are you kidding?

        One more point. However imperfect man and nature may be, at least water is a renewable resource. You can argue all you want, but it would have all dried up a long time ago if this was not the case. Every time it rains, the point is proven. The computer, monitor, modem and everything else that each of us is using to view and discuss the issue is not renewable, and that cannot be argued. In fact, virtually all of this hardware (minus a tiny fraction that is recycled) will sit in junk yards for a period of time that’s probably close to infinity.

        Personally, I think any such discussion should be labeled in the same manner as other political statements. Give it what it deserves, a disclosure and acceptance of responsibility for the nonsense that it is.

  2. I gave up fizzy cold drinks yesterday. I’m really suffering withdrawal symptoms.

    • Don’t feel so blue
      A little less cola =
      Fewer visits to the loo
      Good for you

      or as your MP dakus would have put it, tera kya hoga kaliya?

      Never mind stupid drinks. Why don’t you write, dude.

  3. Here’s a wicked thought – make the cost of water for coke’s bottling plant = cost of water for a kinley 1 litre bottle. 🙂

    Brilliant. Just brilliant.

    I read somewhere that the “mineral” water industry has revenues of around $9 billion, which, ironically enough, is more than the money needed to tackle the world’s potable water problems to a great extent.

    Another one from a colleague : If all Indians stopped drinking cola for around 4 months, the executives of Cola firms would take to hard alchohol.

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