After PepsiCo announced the decision to remove brominated vegetable oil from their line of Gatorade sports drinks last year, Coca-Cola has revealed that they will do the same for their line of Powerade drinks. BVO is a patented flame retardant.
Update: Coca-Cola has vowed to remove BVO from all of its beverages, not just Powerade.
The ingredient, which the Food and Drug Administration claims "is used as a stabilizer for flavoring oils in fruit-flavored drinks," is banned in Japan and the European Union. But you know the FDA—keep those ingredient gates wide open!
Both PepsiCo and Coca-Cola came under fire recently through a Change.org petition by Mississippi teenager Sarah Kavanagh.
. . . she targeted Gatorade and Powerade in petitions because they're designed for athletes, who are likely more concerned about what they're putting into their bodies. Her Powerade petition had more than 59,000 online supporters while the Gatorade one had more than 200,000.
Though BVO is now missing from the list of Powerade ingredients in a number of states, some still contain the stabilizer, perhaps due to Coca-Cola's gradual phasing out of the ingredient.
Coca-Cola has said that BVO "improve[s] stability and prevent[s] certain ingredients from separating," but maybe just don't drink beverages that need extra ingredients to fix that problem. Suggestion: water.
[Image via Coca-Cola]