Fla. Churches Boycott Pepsi Products Over 'Anti-Family' Efforts

A number of churches in Florida are boycotting Pepsi products to send a message to companies involved in "anti-family" activities.

The Community Issues Council, which meets with about 50 churches each month to discuss issues that conflict with traditional Christian values, had asked the soft drink company to curb its support of groups, events and legal issues that "oppose traditional family values," according to council president Terry Kemple.

"This year, they pumped millions of dollars into organizations that opposed California's same-sex marriage ban, Proposition 8," he told The Tampa Bay Tribune.

Pepsi also forces its employees to attend sexual orientation and gender identity diversity training, where they are taught to accept homosexuality, noted Kemple's church – Bell Shoals Baptist in Brandon, Fla., which is leading the boycott – in a report earlier this year.

"There are a lot of corporations that have diversity programs, but Pepsi goes far beyond," Kemple added.

After months of discussion turned up fruitless, Bell Shoals Baptist decided to boycott Pepsi and this week replaced the last of their ten Pepsi vending machines with Coke machines.

The megachurch, which draws several thousand worshippers each Sunday, has been joined by other churches including Kings Avenue Baptist Church and Plant City Church of God.

It was not immediately clear whether the boycott is for only Pepsi products or if it also includes all brands under Pepsi's mother company, PepsiCo.

PepsiCo, one of the largest corporations in the country, boasts subsidiaries including Gatorade, Tropicana, Frito-Lay and Quaker.