Bacolod Mayor Evelio Leonardia said yesterday he supports the call of the stakeholders of the sugar industry to ban Coca-Cola products at the BacoLaodiat Festival in Bacolod City.
The 13th BacoLaodiat Festival is slated on February 15 to 18.
“Personally, I am for the sugar industry. So I go along the line of its protection and promotion because, first, it is the industry that actually started to build Bacolod,” Leonardia said.
Manuel Lamata, United Sugar Producers' Federation of the Philippines president, had said that the sugar industry is again calling on a boycott of Coca-Cola products at the BacoLaodiat Festival.
Coke products were also banned from the MassKara Festival in October.
Lamata said the industry has been waging a boycott on Coke for its use of High Fructose Corn Syrup in its beverages, although the beverage firm had announced that it had increased its use of domestic sugar.
The Sugar Alliance of the Philippines is also calling for a ban of Coke products at the BacoLaodait Festival.
“We cannot deny that our economy started from the sugar industry. And even up to this time when we have sufficiently diversified, it is still a major factor, and there are many people who are dependent on the sugar industry. So we want to support this,” Leonardia said.
He already told the organizers of the BacoLaodiat Festival of his sentiment, and he believes they will follow his advice, he added.*CGS
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