Drinking Sprite, Fanta Alongside Vitamin C Is Poisonous, Court Rules
A Lagos High Court sitting at Igbosere has ordered the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to mandate the Nigerian Bottling Company Plc (NBC) to put a written warning on Fanta and Sprite bottles stating that both soft drinks are poisonous when consumed along with Vitamin C.
The court also stated that NAFDAC failed Nigerians by failing to declare as unfit for human consumption products discovered by tests in the United Kingdom to be poisonous when consumed along with ascorbic acid (Vitamin C).
In the judgment delivered by Justice Adedayo Oyebanji, the court awarded a cost of N2 million against NAFDAC for negligence.
The court gave the ruling in a suit filed by a Lagos-based businessman, Emmanuel Fijabi Adebo, and his company, Fijabi Adebo Holdings Limited, against NBC Plc and NAFDAC.
The plaintiff, Adebo, in the suit urged the court to declare that NBC was liable for negligence by allowing excessive levels of benzoic acid and sunset additives in its Fanta and Sprite beverage.
He also urged the court to order NAFDAC to carry out routine laboratory tests on all the soft drinks and related products of NBC to ensure they are safe for consumption.
NAFDAC did not file any defence.
In her judgment, Justice Oyebanji said he was in absolute agreement with the claimants that soft drinks manufactured by NBC ought to be fit for human consumption irrespective of whether they were to be consumed locally or abroad.
He also held that NAFDAC has been grossly irresponsible in its regulatory duties to the consumers of Fanta and Sprite manufactured by NBC.
The court then ordered, “That NAFDAC shall forthwith mandate Nigeria Bottling Company to, within 90 days, include on all the bottles of Fanta and Sprite soft drinks manufactured by the company, a written warning that the content of the said bottles of Fanta and Sprite soft drinks cannot be taken with Vitamin C as same becomes poisonous if taken with Vitamin C.”