Pepsi, Cola Out In TN, Local Drinks In……

Meanwhile, Indian Beverage Association (IBA), an industry lobby, has expressed disappointment over the call to boycott products manufactured by Coca Cola and PepsiCo India.

Pepsi and Coke sell a range of products across India, including softdrinks and bottled water, and the boycott proposal in Tamil Nadu could affect more than a million outlets in India's most prosperous state, which is home to almost 70 million people.

"After the Jallikattu movement, we found many youths are not in favour of the two cola brands", A.M. Vikrama Raja, President, Tamil Nadu Vanigar Sangangalin Peramaippu (TNVSP), told IANS. Two of the biggest trade associations in the region called for the boycott in favor of Indian products starting March 1.

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Furthermore, he stated that the soft drinks will be manufactured here after in India itself, as a replacement to the ones being circulated now in the market.

Stating that it is "deeply disappointed" by the calls made for the boycott of Pepsi and Coca-Cola products in Tamil Nadu, it stated, "This call is against the proven fundamentals of robust economic growth, and against the clarion call of "Make in India".

Two major trade bodies - the Federation of Tamil Nadu Traders Associations (FTNTA) and the Tamil Nadu Traders Associations Forum (TNTAF) - said they proposed the ban after seeing young people coming out in huge numbers last month against a ban on the local bull-taming festival, jallikattu. In Salem, shopkeepers stopped selling Aquafina too, a drinking water brand from PepsiCo. "When there is demand, the brand owners will beef up their supply chain and retailers will go for them", he said.

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The issue of bringing of ban on Coca-Cola and Pepsi took off during the recent jallikattu protests. The association said it is open to engage with any organisation that has a different point of view.

"I don't buy colas for home. We are promoting Indian soft drinks, and will encourage better sales of fruit juices", he said.

"The sales have been dwindling, but as Bovonto and other brands are selling well, it shouldn't be a problem in the coming days", said a wholesaler.

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