Mexico City,(IANS/EFE) Soft-drink major Coca-Cola will pull its products out of nearly 300,000 public schools in Mexico in an effort to comply with the government's call to reduce obesity among children.
"We are committed to joining government efforts to support campaigns for dealing with problems like obesity," Soledad Izquierdo, Coca-Cola de Mexico director of corporate communications, said.
Mexico's education secretariat and health secretariat announced a series of measures in May banning the sale of junk food in public and private elementary schools from August.
The beverage giant started working last year to promote a healthy lifestyle around the world, Izquierdo said.
Coca-Cola published guidelines in March for sales in schools that focus on responsible marketing and respecting the rights of teachers and parents to decide what children consume, he said. "Classrooms should be free of advertisements aimed at children."
Coca-Cola de Mexico will not sell any of the beverages from its portfolio in elementary schools, except for those that school officials, parents or teachers ask the company to," he said.
The removal of products from all schools will, however, be completed only by 2013 due to contractual obligations.
Coca-Cola is committed not to advertise to children younger than 12, focusing instead on adults since they "have the responsibility to decide what products children consume," he said.
Coca-Cola has 64 brands including carbonated drinks, juices, diet beverages and sports drinks among others.