Obama agency rules Pepsi use of cells derived from aborted fetus ‘ordinary business’
By John Henry Westen March 5, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com)
The Pepsi Company, which is set to release the new product Pepsi Next in the coming weeks, is facing a more robust boycott as pro-life activists protest the company use of cells derived from an aborted fetus in flavor-enhancing research. But Pepsi has succeeded, with help from the Obama Administration, in keeping its controversial operations from consideration by its shareholders.
In a decision delivered Feb 28th, President Obama’s Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) ruled that PepsiCo’s use of cells derived from aborted fetal remains in their research and development agreement with Senomyx to produce flavor enhancers falls under “ordinary business operations.”
The letter signed by Attorney Brian Pitko of the SEC Office of Chief Counsel was sent in response to a 36-page document submitted by PepsiCo attorneys in January, 2012. In that filing, PepsiCo pleaded with the SEC to reject the Shareholder’s Resolution filed in October 2011 that the company “adopt a corporate policy that recognizes human rights and employs ethical standards which do not involve using the remains of aborted human beings in both private and collaborative research and development agreements.”
PepsiCo lead attorney George A. Schieren noted that the resolution should be excluded because it “deals with matters related to the company’s ordinary business operations” and that “certain tasks are so fundamental to run a company on a day-to-day basis that they could not be subject to stockholder oversight.”
Debi Vinnedge, Executive Director of Children of God for Life, the organization that exposed the PepsiCo-Senomyx collaboration last year was “appalled by the apathy and insensitivity” of both PepsiCo executives and the Obama administration.
“We’re not talking about what kind of pencils PepsiCo wants to use – we are talking about exploiting the remains of an aborted child for profit,” she said. “Using human embryonic kidney (HEK-293) to produce flavor enhancers for their beverages is a far cry from routine operations!”
PepsiCo also requested the resolution be excluded because it “probed too deeply into matters of a complex nature upon which shareholders cannot make an informed judgment.”
“In other words, PepsiCo thinks its stockholders are too stupid to understand what they are doing with the remains of aborted children,” Vinnedge stated. “Well they are about to find out just how smart the public really is when they turn up the heat on the world-wide boycott!”
Oklahoma Senator Ralph Shortey has proposed a bill SB1418 banning the sale of products that are developed with or contain aborted fetal remains. In the case of Pepsi products, the cells derived from the aborted fetus do not end up in the final product.
“We commend the Senator for his courageous move,” noted Vinnedge. “The public is already saying no thanks to all Pepsi beverages and Pepsi Next is just that – the “next” product to avoid!”
To date, the world-wide boycott has expanded to include Canada, Germany, Poland, UK, Ireland, Scotland, Spain, Portugal, Australia and New Zealand.
For more information visit Children of God for Life.