Walmart, the US-based giant, claimed that users of weight loss drugs were buying less food. Pepsi’s and Walkers Crisps are “studying” their effects on sales.
Hugh Johnston, chief financial officer at PepsiCo, said that it was still “very early” to understand the impact of weight loss jabs like Wegovy on sales . He said, “We are studying it closely because of obvious reasons.”
Walmart, the US retail giant, claimed last week that customers who take appetite suppressants buy less food in its stores.
Walmart US Chief Executive John Furner stated that the company had been monitoring what people spent in its stores after picking up prescriptions for weight loss medications at its pharmacies.
Mr Furner stated that these people buy “slightly fewer calories” than those not taking the medication.
In response to these comments, investors sold shares of major snack and fizzy drinks makers.
PepsiCo’s stock ended the week about 5pc down. PepsiCo also produces Doritos, Quaker Oats and other products. Coca Cola’s stock fell to the lowest level it has seen in over a year. McDonald’s, Hershey and US chocolate maker Hershey all ended last week with lower prices.
Ramon Laguarta, PepsiCo’s chief executive officer, said in a Tuesday conference call with analysts: “Ofcourse, we are observing the potential impact of these new medications.” The impact has been negligible so far.
Wegovy has been approved in the UK to combat obesity and is already available in the US.
Ozempic, a drug that suppresses appetite and helps people manage diabetes, is also widely used by Hollywood to lose weight.
Semaglutide is a new class of weight loss drugs that have been hailed for their effectiveness in weight loss.
PepsiCo announced that it would focus more on zero-sugar beverages and portion control packages due to changing consumer preferences.
The company has raised its profit expectations for the third year in a row, and shoppers continue to purchase its products even though prices have increased.
Citi analysts said that the results proved concerns over the impact of appetite-suppressing drugs on PepsiCo sales were “overblown”.