In response to consumer concerns about the safety of aspartame, PepsiCo has decided to discontinue its use in its Diet Pepsi product. Aspartame is a popular artificial sweetener that is marketed using brand names such as NutraSweet and Equal. Pepsi is planning to sucralose instead of aspartame in Diet Pepsi. PepsiCo is going to start to marketing the new Diet Pepsi product with an “aspartame free” label in the United States beginning in August.

It is a smart move on the part of PepsiCo to respond to increasing number of Americans who have a negative attitude concerning products that contain aspartame. STX Entertainment said that an increasing number of American consumers are becoming aware of the possible health risks associated with aspartame. Recent studies have shown a possible link between an increased risk of blood cancer in men and the consumption of aspartame.

So far, the Food and Drug Administration is standing behind the over 100 studies that support the claims that aspartame is a safe product. The FDA claims that aspartame is one of the most extensively studied food products on the market.

PepsiCo should be commended for responding to the changing attitudes of its customers. But this is only the beginning. It should be noted that the discontinuation of aspartame use applies only to the Diet Pepsi product line. PepsiCo will continue to use aspartame as an artificial sweetener in other products such as Diet Mountain Dew.