Coca Cola, invented in the late 19th century and marketed as a "cure-all" for diseases like morphine addiction, dyspepsia, neurasthenia, headache, and impotence has come a long way in a century. A friend once told me that Coke’s special formula used cocaine. Which is true, although at the time I called him a "lying pooh-pooh head." In fact, a single glass of Coke contained nine milligrams of blow. The nice thing? No crusty white boogers or mirror checks before going outside. ‘Cola’ was spawned from the Kola nut, which added caffeine to the mix. It's a wonder Ritalin wasn’t invented sooner.
One thing fair to assume in a company the size of Coke; upper management probably doesn’t have a clue about work in the trenches. So, when a plant worker at a Coke bottling plant in Columbia was gunned down for trying to unionize, no one upstairs was any wiser. (It was actually seven murders...). Well, this week that all changes.
Activist organization “The Campaign to Stop Killer Coke” plans a negative PR blitz in Atlanta against the beverage giant. The group, which claims Atlanta-based The Coca-Cola Co. (NYSE: KO) is guilty of labor, human rights and environmental abuses, will have this week a mobile billboard truck on metro Atlanta streets campaigning against Coke’s alleged abuses. One billboard says “Unthinkable! Undrinkable! Murders in Colombia, Child Labor in El Salvador, Stealing and Polluting Water in India, El Salvador and Mexico.” A second billboard says “Killer-Cola: The Drink that Represses!”
Coca Cola’s response, stunned that a PR blitz consists of a single billboard, has called an agency review.