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Health

The power in the shadow of Coca-Cola in China

London / The American multinational Coca-Cola has woven in China a complex network of institutional, financial and personal relations to influence the obesity policies of the Government of Beijing.

A study published by the British Medical Journal (BMJ) argues Coca-Cola has manoeuvred “intelligently” to reach a “position of power” in the shadow and prevent its economic interests are weakened by any measure of health of the Asian giant against the “growing epidemic” of obesity in China.

Study author Susan Greenhalgh, a professor at the Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies Research at Harvard University (USA), said in a statement that China’s official policy on obesity is aligned with Coca-Cola by linking sugary drink with physical activity instead of providing dietary restrictions.

CHINA IS THE THIRD MARKET OF COCA-COLA

According to data provided by Greenhalgh, 42.3% of adults in China were overweight or obese in 2011, 20.5% more than in 1991, an “epidemic” whose “magnitude and consequences will probably continue to worsen” in this country, where Coca-Cola has its third market.

In 2013, the researcher carried out dozens of interviews with experts in Beijing to analyze the rapid spread of this health problem and the role played by the so-called International Institute of Life Sciences (ILSI), created in 1978 by a manager of Coca-Cola and who now also finance, among others, Nestlé, McDonalds or PepsiCo.

The ILSI branch in this country, established in 1993, is located in the same building that houses the Chinese Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, a body under the Ministry of Health, Greenhalgh recalls.

“By putting their huge resources behind just one aspect of science and in the absence of other actors with sufficient means to propose more balanced solutions, including the regulation of the food industry, the company has made China a safe place for Coca- Cola”, the expert argues. (January 15, 2019, EFE/Practica Español)

News related in video (March 2009):


Comprehension

Lee la noticia y responde a las preguntas. (Read the news and answer the questions.)

Congratulations - you have completed Lee la noticia y responde a las preguntas. (Read the news and answer the questions.). You scored %%SCORE%% out of %%TOTAL%%. Your performance has been rated as %%RATING%%
Your answers are highlighted below.
Question 1
La noticia habla de un estudio...  
A
del Gobierno chino sobre las causas de la obesidad.
B
sobre la influencia de Coca-Cola en unas políticas del Gobierno chino.
C
sobre el aumento de personas obesas en todo el mundo.
Question 2
Según ese estudio,  Coca-Cola...  
A
está perdiendo cada vez más influencia en varias instituciones chinas.
B
ha logrado evitar que sus intereses se vean afectados en China.
C
está teniendo importantes pérdidas a causa de unas medidas del Gobierno chino.
Question 3
La política oficial china sobre la obesidad...    
A
es totalmente opuesta a lo que Coca-Cola defiende.
B
va en la misma línea que la que defiende Coca-Cola.
C
está influyendo en una importante compañía estadounidense.
Question 4
Según el estudio...    
A
se ha demostrado que cada vez hay menos obesos en China.
B
se descarta que la situación empeore en los próximos años.
C
es probable que cada vez haya más obesos en China.
Question 5
El ILSI fue creado por una persona vinculada a Coca-Cola.  
A
Para nada.
B
No se sabe.
C
Así es.
Question 6
En general, en el vídeo se habla de...  
A
la prohibición del consumo de comida rápida en China.
B
algunos platos de la comida tradicional china.
C
la presencia de restaurantes de comida rápida en China.
Question 7
Según el vídeo, es caro comer en un restaurante de comida rápido.    
A
En absoluto.
B
Así es.
C
No se sabe.
Question 8
Según el vídeo, los dietistas...    
A
descartan que la obesidad sea una 'epidemia'  en China.
B
desmienten que haya chinos obesos.
C
se preocupan por la obesidad en China.
Once you are finished, click the button below. Any items you have not completed will be marked incorrect. Get Results
There are 8 questions to complete.

Vocabulary

Congratulations - you have completed . You scored %%SCORE%% out of %%TOTAL%%. Your performance has been rated as %%RATING%%
Your answers are highlighted below.
Question 1
En la noticia, 'gigante asiático' hace referencia a...  
A
un hombre asiático muy alto.
B
China.
C
un asunto importante.
Question 2
Un sinónimo de 'empeorar' es...  
A
'solucionar'.
B
'agravar'.
C
'mejorar'.
Question 3
Una situación 'empeora' cuando...  
A
esta está mejorando.
B
esta es cada vez peor.
C
nada cambia.
Once you are finished, click the button below. Any items you have not completed will be marked incorrect. Get Results
There are 3 questions to complete.

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