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- Wednesday, January 16, 2013 - From Print Edition


NEW YORK: Coca-Cola became one of the world’s most powerful brands by equating its soft drinks with happiness. Now it is taking to the airwaves for the first time to address a growing cloud over the industry: obesity.


The Atlanta-based company begin airing a two-minute spot during the highest-rated shows on CNN, Fox News and MSNBC this week in hopes of flexing its marketing muscle in the debate over soft drinks and their impact on public health.


The advert lays out Coca-Cola’s record of providing drinks with fewer calories and notes that weight gain is the result of consuming too many calories of any kind - not just those in fizzy drinks.


For Coca-Cola, the world’s No1 beverage company, the adverts reflect the mounting pressures on the broader industry. Later this year, New York City is set to impose a cap on the size of soft drinks sold at restaurants, cinemas and sports arenas.


The mayor of Cambridge, Massachusetts, has already introduced a similar measure, saying she was inspired by New York’s move.