[09 May/Food Dive]

A study by the University of Cambridge found evidence of Coca-Cola striking agreements with five public universities that gave the soda manufacturer the ability to review and “terminate without reason” or “quash” health studies it funded. The researchers assessed 87,000 documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act from contracts created between 2015 to 2016. There was no evidence that they killed any contract, however the effects of the fine print could have affected results, with pressure placed on scientists to please the company and not link the sodas to the obesity epidemic. Coca-Cola has not independently funded research around health and wellbeing since that time after public demands for transparency. There have been questions about Coca-Cola’s transparency, particularly towards research and donations to charities.