The global giant PepsiCo has prohibited mentioning the war in Ukraine in advertising: the document has been published
The American company PepsiCo, included in the list of international sponsors of the war (brands Lay's, Mirinda, Pepsi, Sandora, 7up, Chudo, Slovyanochka, Sadochok, Sandorik, etc.), prohibits mentioning Russian aggression in its advertising, even in Ukraine itself. Therefore, when searching for a new advertising and PR agency in the country, the company set a strict condition for a potential partner to exclude any mention of the war or support for Ukraine and the Armed Forces in future advertisements and communications.
This information comes from a study conducted by the activist group B4Ukraine, a coalition of Ukrainian and international civil society organizations. It is noted that PepsiCo explicitly specifies in its advertising policy:
- any references to war, hostilities, aggression, the army, personnel (on the part of the brand), the Armed Forces of Ukraine;
- talking about supporting Ukraine and the Armed Forces of Ukraine;
- any negative references that "create a sense of 'danger'".
"In the fall of 2023, when PepsiCo was searching for a new advertising and PR agency in Ukraine, they imposed a condition on potential partners to exclude any mention of the war or support for Ukraine and its army in future communications. B4Ukraine contacted Pepsi's offices in Ukraine and the United States for comment but had not received a response at the time of publication," Euromaidan Press reported.
It is noted that a post on PepsiCo's Instagram page on October 17, 2023, mentioned that its "volunteers distributed food packages to 1,200 families in Borodianka whose homes were destroyed." However, it was not specified who had brutally destroyed the houses of these people.
"PepsiCo volunteers have distributed food packages to 1,200 families in Borodyanka whose homes were destroyed. Our help is still much needed. We sincerely thank all the volunteers who did not stand aside and devoted their day off to a noble cause," the post reads.
Why PepsiCo is hiding from the war
Analysts see a possible reason for PepsiCo's position as the fact that it not only continues to operate in Russia but has also significantly increased its profits there. At the same time, it pays taxes to the Russian treasury.
"PepsiCo's net profit in Russia last year increased by 333% to $525 million. The company paid about $115 million in taxes to the Kremlin. Now the iconic Pepsi Cola is sold under the Evervess-Cola brand, although regular Pepsi Cola is still easy to buy in Russian supermarkets thanks to the so-called parallel imports," they stated.
PepsiCo is a war sponsor
Earlier, the National Agency for the Prevention of Corruption (NAPC) added PepsiCo to the list of international sponsors of war. It noted that, according to available information, "PepsiCo's Lay's chips were found in the food rations of Russian soldiers."
At the same time, they noted that despite the company's announcement in March 2022 that it would cease advertising and beverage production in Russia due to its full-scale invasion of Ukraine, production of 7Up and Mirinda beverages under the Evervess and Frustyle brands resumed in August 2022. And in March 2023, the production of Pepsi beverages under the Evervess and Lyubimy brands resumed.
"In addition, PepsiCo has launched a new brand of lemonade in the country called Russian Gift to replace the previous products. The company also continues to produce and distribute other products: chips, snacks, and dairy products," the NACP emphasized.
Moreover, they noted, the absence of sincere intentions to leave the Russian market is also indicated by the fact that the company's career page lists more than 580 open vacancies in Russia. "By creating jobs, foreign companies relieve the Kremlin of the burden of unemployment benefits and related social problems," the agency stated.
As reported by OBOZ.UA, the NACP also added one of the world's largest fast-food chains, the American franchise Subway, to the list of international sponsors of war. The reason is that more than 500 of the company's establishments continue to operate in the Russian market, paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxes to the Russian budget.