A request to file a NIS 200 million (USD 43 million) class action lawsuit against the Central Bottling Company (Coca Cola Israel) was submitted to the Tel Aviv District Court
The plaintiff, Yaakov Huri, who filed the request through his lawyer Yochi Geva, alleges that the Central Bottling Company misled consumers of its Fanta brand soft drinks because the drinks are not suitable for human consumption. The plaintiff claims that the Fanta drinks contain a combination of two ingredients—sodium preservatives and acerbic acid—that together create Benzene, which is believed to be a cancer-causing ingredient in humans.
The plaintiff additionally claims that the quantity of these ingredients in a Fanta bottle are eight times more than the acceptable, or the recommended amount in drinking water, and it should be applied soft drinks as well.
'Fanta products carry no health risks'
He said that he used to trust the company's approval and the labels on the bottles stating that the product does not risk one's health and that obviously there are no ingredients that in combination could produce cancer causing elements.
Additionally, Huri claims that the company was fully aware of the health risks it subjected the public to.
Coca Cola said in response that it didn't receive the lawsuit yet and that their products are safe for drinking and undergo a strict quality assurance process as part of a quality assurance system which is one of the most advanced in the world.
“Products stand the requirement of not only the global coca cola company but also all the strict norms and standards of the Health Ministry and the Standards Institution of Israel," the company said in a statement.
The company explained that a combination of the ingredients exists in two Fanta products and both were analyzed by the company's global laboratory in Europe. The findings also support the claims that the amount of Benzene is drastically lower than the Israeli standard and the World Health Organization standard for drinking water. Therefore, Coca Cola said, "it's important to stress that Fanta products carry no health risks."