Flame retardant…in your sports drink? As shocking as it sounds, many Coca-Cola drinks contain a controversial chemical known as brominated vegetable oil, or BVO, which is used as a flame retardant in plastics, upholstered furniture and some clothing for children. Prompted by mounting consumer complaints, Coca-Cola said that it plans to phase out BVO from its products—including Powerade, Fresca and Fanta—by the end of the year.
The safety of BVO has been a contentious topic in the scientific community for decades. Tests have revealed that flame retardant chemicals can build up in our bodies over time, potentially leading to brain development problems in children, fertility issues, thyroid dysfunction, and even cancer. The issue came into the spotlight thanks to the momentum behind an online petition started in 2012 by Mississippi teen Sarah Kavanagh, who urged Coca-Cola to remove the hazardous chemical from its beverages.
Tune in below to learn more about Coca-Cola’s decision: