BYU offering caffeinated drinks on campus

Soda lovers of Utah, rejoice: after decades of serving caffeine-free sodas, Brigham Young University said Thursday, Sept. 21, that it will now offer caffeinated Coca-Cola Co.

But Brigham Young University students, who predominantly are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, have gone without as part of a central tenet of their religion, which historically has barred the use of caffeine, drugs or alcohol.

Mormons avoid drinking coffee and tea.

At BYU, the "honor code" requires that students do not partake in "alcoholic beverages, tobacco, tea, coffee, and substance abuse".

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Perhaps the most interesting comment came from students talking about the economic impact this would have... on the gas stations near campus where they used to get their caffeinated drinks.

The change only applies to BYU's main campus in Provo. Officials said the change is based on student requests, is not financially motivated and does not change the university's exclusive contract with Coca-Cola Co.

The university announced the decision in a FAQ posted to their website, saying there has been a recent uptick in requests for caffeinated soda.

"I think it's a step in the right direction because I think it will lead to more acceptance and less judgment and I think if you judge you can't love", Simmons says.

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"Caffeinated soft drinks have never been banned from campus", she said.

The change on campus is so historic it necessitated a Q&A briefing with the director of dining services. That means no Dr. Pepper or Mountain Dew.

Caffeinated soft drinks will also be sold at sporting events that draw tens of thousands of fans.

He said the BYU Food Services decided not to sell caffeinated soft drinks beginning in the mid-1950s and consumer preferences have changed in the past several years.

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  • Jermaine Castillo