Bolivia Considers Enshrining 'Coca' in Constitution
SCOTT SIMON, host:
Coca-Cola may have to find itself a new name, at least, in Bolivia. This week, the Coca Committee, a group that's advising the assembly that's rewriting the Bolivian constitution, endorsed a measure that would ban foreign companies from using the name, coca, in their products.
The plant native to Bolivia not only provides the central ingredient of cocaine, but is held sacred by many indigenous groups there. The locals also chew its leaves to ward off hunger and boost energy at high altitude.
Margarita Teran of the Coca Committee says that she is dismayed that Coke can sell soft drinks around the world while her country is prohibited from exporting products made with coca.
Bolivian President Evo Morales would like to pursue the United Nations to allow Bolivia to export products containing coca, including toothpaste, facial moisturizer and herbal tea.
Some herb in that tea.
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SIMON: Coming up, when the voice of God says, quiet on the set, action, and roll 'em.