In response to a deluge of criticism over its latest marketing strategy, in which the company employed prominent scientists to support the less-than-credible idea that diet is far less important to public health than exercise, Coca-Cola has admitted that “the way we have engaged the public health and scientific communities… is not working.”
In an editorial published to The Wall Street Journal, Coke CEO Muhtar Kent acknowledged that the company’s approach to the “obesity crisis” was poorly planned, and pledged to institute more transparent methods of engagement in the future.
“I am disappointed that some actions we have taken to fund scientific research and health and well-being programs have served only to create more confusion and mistrust,” Kent wrote. “I know our company can do a better job engaging both the public-health and scientific communities — and we will.”
Earlier this month, the president of Coca-Cola’s newly-founded Global Energy Network suggested that there was “really virtually no compelling evidence” that fast food and sugary drinks were related to poor health.
Revising his company’s stance, Kent wrote in the WSJ, “Coca-Cola has always believed that a healthy diet and regular exercise are essential for a healthy lifestyle.”