New Video Ad Slams Crystal Pepsi Return Over PepsiCo's Ties to Rainforest Destruction

August 08, 2016

Crystal Pepsi Targeted by Consumer group & Environmentalists Over Ties to Rainforest Deforestation

New Video Parodies 90s Crystal Pepsi Ads, Links Company to Destruction of Rainforests in South East Asia

Thousands Urge PepsiCo to Fix Its Palm Oil Policy; Protect Indonesia’s Rainforests and Workers

As Crystal Pepsi hits shelves in the United States for the first time since the 1990s, advocates from SumOfUs, an international consumer group are calling on PepsiCo to amend its palm oil policy to help prevent rainforest destruction and worker rights abuses associated with palm oil production in Indonesia.

Coinciding with the launch of Crystal Pepsi in the US, SumOfUs has released a new video ad parodying Crystal Pepsi ads from the 1990s and linking the company to rainforest destruction in South East Asia.

SumOfUs plans to promote the parody ad on Facebook and Google and target Pepsi customers and enthusiasts throughout the month of August.


In addition to the ad, more than 80,000 people in the United States and around the world have signed onto a petition urging Pepsico to only use responsible palm oil in its supply chain, and make sure that its palm oil policy applies to its Indonesian producer, IndoFood.


“While PepsiCo makes juicy profits off this product relaunch, Indonesia’s rainforest, workers, and endangered animals pay a heavy price. PepsiCo’s palm oil policy contains a huge loophole – it doesn’t cover its producer in Indonesia, IndoFood,” explained Katherine Tu, campaigner for SumOfUs. “PepsiCo buys over 470,000 metric tonnes of palm oil each year – so much that if you filled Pepsi cans with palm oil, there would be enough to wrap around the entire world four times over.”

This cheap palm oil is used to produce PepsiCo products that line our supermarket shelves. Products like Doritos, Cheetos, Quaker Granola Bars, and Lay’s potato chips. The demand for palm oil is driving the clearing of swathes of rainforest and carbon-rich peatlands. It’s making greenhouse gas emissions skyrocket and it’s fuelling climate change. It’s pushing endangered species like orangutans, elephants, and tigers to the brink of extinction. Many workers in the palm oil industry are paid little or nothing at all – especially women. Children are working on IndoFood plantations. Some workers don’t have access to proper safety equipment, and are exposed to highly toxic chemicals on a daily basis.

“A nostalgia for rollerblades and fanny packs is fine, but it's crystal clear PepsiCo needs to open its eyes and realize we are no longer in the 1990's and deforestation, wildlife extinction and labor abuses are no longer acceptable costs of doing business," *said Gemma Tillack, Senior Agribusiness Campaigner with Rainforest Action Network. *"Since crystal pepsi first launched in 1992, millions of acres of precious Indonesian rainforests have been destroyed for palm oil, but 25 years later the company continues to source palm oil from laggards that are clinging to business as usual instead of producing truly responsible palm oil.”

SumOfUs has campaigned against PepsiCo’s use of unsustainable palm oil in the past targeting brands ranging from Cheetos to Doritos to Pepsi True. While PepsiCo announced a new palm oil policy earlier this year, SumOfUs points out that the policy’s massive loophole for IndoFoods continues to threaten rainforests, endangered animals and workers throughout South East Asia.