1Coke Misuse: A Soft Drink Appears to Be an Effective Pesticide
Indian farmers use Coca-Cola to protect their plantations against pests. They ensure that this soft drink due to its sugar content appears to be an effective anti-pest agent. Pepsi and Coca-Cola regional managers disagree with them saying that using the drinks in pest control has no scientific ground. But what if they miss something?
The point in using soft drinks in agricultural purposes instead of pesticides is that Coke costs 10 times cheaper. Farmers say that treating an acre with pesticides costs 70 rupees ($1.50), while treating it with Coke mixed with water costs 55-60 rupees less. As this practice becomes more and more popular among Indian farmers, Coke’s sales increased excessively.
Devendra Sharma, agricultural specialist, supposes that farmers are wrong when they think that the soft drinks work the same as pesticides. Because when sweet sugar drinks are sprinkled on crops, they attract ants which in turn eat larvae of insects.
A scientist Sanket Thakur explains it another way: “Plants get a direct supply of carbohydrates and sugar which in turn boost the plants’ immunity, so the plantation yields a better crop.” Anupam Verma, Pepsi sales manager in Chhattisgarh ensures that if there was any truth in farmers’ statements, then they would sell their products as a pesticide rather than a soft drink. Because he understands that selling pesticides makes more money than selling drinks.
Using Coke as a pesticide isn’t exclusively Indian invention. Many people set containers filled with Coca-Cola out to drive off pests like slugs and bugs from their yard or garden. Sweet drink attracts them, and acids that Coke contains kill them.