Brominated vegetable oil is a food additive that is used as an stabilizer and emulsifier in non-alcoholic beverages. Flavoring oils can be dissolved in brominated vegetable oil more easily than in water. And brominated vegetable oil will remain in aqueous suspension longer than the flavoring oils would alone. A suspension of brominated vegetable oil in water has a cloudy aspect and seems slightly thicker than pure water.

In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration regulates the use of brominated vegetable oil "in an amount not to exceed 15 parts per million in the finished beverage, pending the outcome of additional toxicological studies". Products that include brominated vegetable oil must declare it in the list of ingredients. In August of 1999, Mountain Blast Powerade was recalled for excluding mention of brominated vegetable oil. In January of 2000 Minute Maid Grape Soda was recalled for the same reason.

Sources consulted:
The Gatorade FAQ,
The Code of Federal Regulation – Title 21 – Food and Drugs section 180.30 (revision April 1, 2002)
Product recall alerts archived at