UAE Pulls Out Fizz Drinks In Size Row

The Ministry of Economy on Monday ordered to remove certain cans and bottles of two of the world’s most consumed soft drinks, Pepsi and Coca Cola, from the UAE market, saying that the companies have reduced quantities without prior permission.

Coca Cola and Pepsi may be removed from retail shelves in the UAE over a claim the size of cans was reduced following a price increase.

ABU DHABI — The Ministry of Economy on Monday ordered to remove certain cans and bottles of two of the world’s most consumed soft drinks, Pepsi and Coca Cola, from the UAE market, saying that the companies have reduced quantities without prior permission.

The decision came following a lenghty meeting by the ministry with other local departments after complaints the two multinational companies have reduced the size of their cans or bottles without prior approval. The meeting concluded that reducing the size but maintaining the price was a surprise to the ministry and other authorities concerned and a violation of the country’s consumer protection law.

“Both Pepsi and Coca Cola have violated the rules by reducing the size of the Dh1.50 can from 355ml to 300ml and removing the price tag,” said Dr Hashem Al Nuaimi, Head of Consumer Protection Department at the ministry.

He also said if the two beverage producers fail to set the prices of cans/bottles according to their volumes, legal action will be taken against them under the consumer protection law. Dr Al Nuaimi said the meeting was called following public complaints that smaller-sized cans of the drinks were being sold for the same price.

He said the companies had earlier applied for volume changes in their products without affecting the prices but it was a surprise to see they reduced the size of cans but maintained the old price. The price should also have been reduced according to the size of the can.”

An Abu Dhabi grocer said they had pullout rumours in the morning but have not received any ministry circular to the effect.