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Cola scare

The week's news at a glance.

New Delhi

An Indian court has ordered chemical testing of Coca-Cola and Pepsi to determine whether the drinks contain dangerous levels of pesticides. An environmental group sparked the fears last month when it said it had found four pesticides and insecticides in locally bottled samples of 12 soft-drink brands owned by the two companies. Levels of contamination were said to be more than 30 times the safety level set by the European Union. The group said the soft-drink industry had been using polluted Indian groundwater for its local products. “The issue concerns public health,” said Judge B.D. Ahmed. “The testing should be done immediately.” Both companies denied the allegations and said they stood by their Indian products, but sales of Coke and Pepsi have plunged.

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