PepsiCo Faces Criticism for Prohibiting War Mentions in Ukrainian Advertisements

Written by Jeppe W

Jan.15 - 2024 12:20 PM CET


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According to a recent report by B4Ukraine, a group monitoring the presence of international businesses in Russia following the country's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, PepsiCo has set strict guidelines for its advertising strategy in Ukraine.

The multinational food, snack, and beverage corporation has reportedly prohibited any mention of the war or expressions of support for the Ukrainian army in its advertising materials within Ukraine.

This revelation came to light after B4Ukraine referenced a brief written by PepsiCo in the fall of 2023 while the company was in search of a new advertising and PR agency in Ukraine.

The specifics of the brief and the reasons behind such a policy remain unclear as PepsiCo has not yet responded to inquiries for comment from its offices in Ukraine and the United States.

In a related development, the National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) of Ukraine added PepsiCo to its list of international "war sponsors" in September 2023. The NACP alleges that despite PepsiCo's initial promise to cease beverage production in Russia after the onset of the full-scale war, the company did not adhere to this commitment. Furthermore, the NACP reported that Lay's chips, a product of PepsiCo, were found in the food rations of Russian soldiers.

These reports and allegations place PepsiCo in a contentious position, highlighting the complex challenges faced by multinational corporations in navigating the geopolitical landscape, especially in conflict zones. The company's advertising strategy and operations in the region are under scrutiny, reflecting the broader ethical and corporate responsibility issues faced by global businesses in times of conflict.

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