Soda & Soft Drink Saturday – Kuat!

7011_kuat_02_thumbA popular sweet drink in Brazil made from the extract of a red berry that grows in Venezuela and Northern Brazil and is high in caffeine, guarana originally got off to a slow start in the U.S. PepsiCo Inc. (PEP) introduced its own version of guarana, called Josta, in 1997 in the U.S., but discontinued it when it didn’t sell in large volume. Guarana has 7011_kuat_03_thumbgained popularity in the U.S. since then, along with other beverages that provide caffeine or energy boosts, such as energy drinks and sports drinks

Named after a sun god for an Amazon Indian tribe in Brazil, Kuat (pronounced “Kwatch”) is a lightly carbonated guarana flavored soda from Coca Cola. This product has been very popular in Brazil and now Coca Cola thinks they can bring it to the states and capitalize on the fact that guarana has become more popular since the energy drink craze. As for the taste, it’s interesting and as far as Coke products go, it’s not bad. It has a light flavor that tastes like your basic bubble gum soda flavor, but with a mild berry like finish. Overall, it’s mildly palatable, but needs some serious work to be a true quality beverage.

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Soda &Soft Drink Saturday – Surge & Urge

chrome_2017-08-05_14-26-54Urge is a citrus flavoured soft drink produced by Coca Cola Norway. It is the Norwegian equivalent of Surge. It was originally introduced in 501255-9f3a3-product_detailNorway in 1996 as a test product. Surge was launched in the United States in 1997. Surge and Urge are no longer sold anywhere else, but after a steady decline, Urge sales increased greatly in Norway, reaching a market share near 10%, despite receiving no marketing since its initial launch. Urge was originally available in Norway in 0.5L and 1.5L bottles, and later also in 0.33L cans, but in the beginning of 1999 the 1.5L bottles were taken off the market, due to unsatisfactory sales. The cans also silently vanished from the market a few years later, leaving only the 0.5L bottles. It has a high sugar content at 68 grams per 0.5L bottle.

Urge 1.5L bottles was re-launched to the Norwegian market on September 1 2008. The re-launch is credited to a massive campaign by the consumers on the internet community Facebook.

An energy drink version, Urge Intense, was launched in the beginning of 2009. A raspberry flavoured version (“Red Sting”) was released in April 2010.

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Sales in Denmark and Sweden ceased in 2001.


The History of Root Beer

The History of Root Beer

Smilax ornata (sarsaparilla)Root beer is a sweet soda traditionally made using the sassafras tree Sassafras albidum (sassafras) or the vine Smilax ornata (sarsaparilla) as the primary flavor. Root beer may be alcoholic or non-alcoholic, come naturally free of caffeine or have caffeine added, and carbonated or non-carbonated. It usually has a thick, foamy head when poured. Modern, commercially produced root beer is generally sweet, foamy, carbonated, nonalcoholic, and flavoured using artificial sassafras flavouring. Sassafras root is still used to flavor traditional root beer, but since sassafras was banned by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration due to the controversially claimed carcinogenicity of its constituent safrole, most commercial recipes do not contain sassafras. Some commercial root beers do use a safrole-free sassafras extract.

History

Sassafras albidum (sassafras)Sassafras root beverages were made by indigenous peoples of the Americas for culinary and medicinal reasons before the arrival of Europeans in North America, but European culinary techniques have been applied to making traditional sassafras-based beverages similar to root beer since the 16th century. Root beer was sold in confectionery stores since the 1840s, and written recipes for root beer have been documented since the 1860s. It possibly was combined with soda as early as the 1850s, and root beer sold in stores was most often sold as a syrup rather than a ready-made beverage. The tradition of brewing root beer is thought to have evolved out of other small beer traditions that produced fermented drinks with very low alcohol content that were thought to be healthier to drink than possibly tainted local sources of drinking water, and enhanced by the medicinal and nutritional qualities of the ingredients used. Beyond its aromatic qualities, the medicinal benefits of sassafras were well known to both Native Americans and Europeans, and druggists began marketing root beer for its medicinal qualities.

The History of Root Beer

Pharmacist Charles Elmer Hires was the first to successfully market a commercial brand of root beer. Hires developed his root tea made from sassafras in 1875, debuted a commercial version of root beer at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition in 1876, and began selling his extract. Hires was a teetotaler who wanted to call the beverage “root tea”. However, his desire to market the product to Pennsylvania coal miners caused him to call his product “root beer”, instead. In 1886, Hires began to bottle a beverage made from his famous extract. By 1893, root beer was distributed widely across the United States. Non-alcoholic versions of root beer became commercially successful, especially during Prohibition.

The History of Root BeerNot all traditional or commercial root beers were sassafras-based. One of Hires’s early competitors was Barq’s, which began selling its sarsaparilla-based root beer in 1898 and was labeled simply as “Barq’s”. In 1919, Roy Allen opened his root-beer stand in Lodi, California, which led to the development of A&W Root Beer. One of Allen’s innovations was that he served his homemade root beer in cold, frosty mugs. IBC Root Beer is another brand of commercially produced root beer that emerged during this period and is still well-known today.

The History of Root Beer

Safrole, the aromatic oil found in sassafras roots and bark that gave traditional root beer its distinctive flavour, was banned for commercially mass-produced foods and drugs by the FDA in 1960. Laboratory animals that were given oral doses of sassafras tea or sassafras oil that contained large doses of safrole developed permanent liver damage or various types of cancer. While sassafras is no longer used in commercially produced root beer and is sometimes substituted with artificial flavors, natural extracts with the safrole distilled and removed are available.

Traditional method

One traditional recipe for making root beer involves cooking a syrup from molasses and water, letting the syrup cool for three hours, and combining it with the root ingredients (including sassafras root, sassafras bark, and wintergreen). Yeast was added, and the beverage was left to ferment for 12 hours, after which it was strained and rebottled for secondary fermentation. This recipe usually resulted in a beverage of 2% alcohol or less, although the recipe could be modified to produce a more alcoholic beverage.

The History of Root Beer

Text fra Wikipedia

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday – TaB

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - TaB

Tab (stylized as TaB) is a diet cola soft drink produced by The Coca-Cola Company, introduced in 1963. The soda was popular throughout the 1960s and 1970s, and several variations were made, including Tab Clear as well as caffeine-free versions.

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - TaBAs a result of studies in the early 1970s linking saccharin, TaB’s main sweetener, with bladder cancer in rats, the United States Congress mandated warning labels on products containing the sweetener. The label requirement was later repealed when no evidence was found linking saccharin with cancer in humans.

After its introduction in 1982, Diet Coke quickly replaced TaB as the Coca-Cola Company’s most popular diet cola, although TaB still retained a loyal following. Approximately 3 million cases were sold in the United States in 2008

History

TaB was introduced as a diet drink in 1963. TaB was created by Coca-Cola after the successful sales and marketing of Diet Rite cola, owned by The Royal Crown Company; previously, Diet Rite had been the only sugarless soda on the market. Tab was marketed to consumers who wanted to “keep tabs” on their weight.

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - TaB

Coca-Cola’s marketing research department used its IBM 1401 computer to generate a list of over 185,000 four-letter words with one vowel, adding names suggested by the company’s own staff; the list was stripped of any words deemed unpronounceable or too similar to existing trademarks. From a final list of about twenty names, “Tabb” was chosen, influenced by the possible play on words, and shortened to “TaB” during development.

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - TaBPackaging designer Robert Sidney Dickens gave the name the capitalization pattern (“TaB”) used in the logo as well as creating a new bottle design for the soft drink.

TaB has been reformulated several times. It was initially sweetened with cyclamate. After the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a ban on cyclamate in 1969, sodium saccharin was used. Studies in laboratory rats during the early 1970s linked saccharin with the development of bladder cancer.

As a result, the United States Congress mandated that further studies of saccharin be performed and required that all food containing saccharin bear a label warning that the sweetener had been shown to cause cancer in laboratory animals. In the absence of further evidence Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - TaBthat saccharin caused cancer in humans, the substance was delisted in 2000 from the U.S. National Toxicology Program’s Report on Carcinogens; this led to the repealing of the warning label requirements for products containing saccharin. In December 2010, the United States Environmental Protection Agency removed saccharin from its list of hazardous substances.

At the height of its popularity, the Tab name was briefly extended to other diet soft drinks, including TaB Lemon-Lime, TaB Black Cherry, TaB Ginger Ale, TaB Root Beer and TaB Orange.

Other variants of Tab have appeared over the years

Caffeine Free TaB was introduced in the 1980s with little fanfare and disappeared soon afterward.

In 1992, Coca-Cola released TaB Clear in the U.S., Australia and UK. It was withdrawn after less than a year.

TaB Energy is an energy drink released in early 2006 that uses a different recipe than Tab cola.

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - TaB

TaB’s popularity began to decline in 1982 with the introduction of Diet Coke, although TaB retained something of a cult following in the United States, where customers purchased about 3 million cases in 2008. According to the Coca-Cola Company, in 2012 TaB was being sold in the countries of the Southern African Customs Union (Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland), Spain, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the United States.

Text from Wikipedia

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday – Mr PiBB

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - Mr PiBB

Mr. PiBB was born in the summer of 1972 after The Coca-Cola Company had the intention of creating a drink that would rival the growing success of Dr Pepper in Southern markets.  After losing a law suit filed by Dr Pepper manufacturers who disputed Coke’s original use Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - Mr PiBBof the name “Peppo,” Coke settled on the name “Mr. PiBB” for important brand-identification purposes.  A combination of an abbreviated formal title and a one-word surname would serve the purpose of helping consumers associate the new product with the “Dr Pepper-type” flavor.

On June 28, 1972, Coke began test-marketing Mr. PiBB in Dr Pepper’s own backyard (Time, July 3 1972, pg. 40).  Among the first cities chosen were Waco and Temple, Texas and Columbus, Starkville and West Point, Mississippi.  The following week, the new product was introduced in Texarkana, Texas and within a couple of months, Mr. PiBB appeared in Houston, Galveston, and Tyler, Texas.  Later that year, they extended distribution to include some Southern and Mid-Western states (Arkansas, Tennessee, Kansas and Georgia).

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - Mr PiBBWithin a couple of years, Mr. PiBB was available in most states East of the Mississippi River and some West-Coast states including California, Oregon and Washington.  Even though Mr. PiBB was unable to equal the overwhelmingly tremendous popularity of Dr Pepper, Coke was able to gain valuable soda market-share points during this time through the introduction of the new brand.

In the first several years of Mr. PiBB’s existence, Coke placed the description, “Blended Flavored (Cherry and Other Flavorings) Carbonated Beverage” on all Mr. PiBB products for consumer identification purposes.  Mr. PiBB was first marketed with the slogan “It Goes Down Good,” which was printed on the original brown and yellow steel cans and point of sale (POS) promotional materials.  Some other advertising pieces during this time included variations of the slogan, namely “With the Easy Taste that Goes Down Good,” and “Smooth and Easy It Goes Down Good.”  “Rise Up With Mr. PiBB” was also used.

The first internal Coca-Cola Company promotion for the brand was titled “Private Air Force for Mr. PiBB.”  Coke authorized the production of gift items with the “Private Air Force for Mr. PiBB” logo to be used as incentives for Coke representatives to Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - Mr PiBBmeet sales goals, set up displays and successfully merchandise the product.  For more information about the “Private Air Force” promotion, and the Mr. PiBB hot-air balloon flown during the drink’s introduction, click here.

In 1975, Coke changed the color of the Mr. PiBB can to red.  This was due to consumer preference research which concluded that the original brownish color used gave off the impression to the consumer that Mr. PiBB was a form of root beer, a dangerous marketing mistake since Coke’s goal was to capitalize on Dr Pepper’s taste distinction.

Throughout the late 1970’s, Coke spent millions of dollars trying to bolster Mr. PiBB name recognition among consumers.  Comedians George Burns and David Brenner were hired to shoot Mr. Pibb television commercials.  The Mr. Pibb logo was posted in Motocross racing Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - Mr PiBBevents and Joie Chitwood stunt shows with hopes of picking up greater market share in one of the most important regional markets for spicy cherry soft drinks – the US South. There was a sharp increase in print, television and radio advertising, using new slogans such as “Have A PiBB Mister.”

In April 1980, Coke, intending to increase sales, redesigned the formula of Mr. PiBB and marketed cans and packaging with “New Taste” printed in bold yellow lettering.  Coca-Cola conducted the “1980’s: A New Taste Odyssey” sweepstakes for their employees to encourage field support of the improved product.  For complete details about Mr. PiBB’s new taste and the sweepstakes, click here.

However, Mr. PiBB was never able to threaten the predominance of Dr Pepper, which was a “first-to-market” product, establishing Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - Mr PiBBprimary name-recognition among consumers in the “cherry-flavored” soft drink category.  Dr Pepper had almost a 100-year head start to win over the minds of the average drinker.  Some industry estimates have had Dr Pepper outselling Mr. PiBB at a ratio of 17-to-1 (much of this disparity, though, is due to Mr. PiBB’s non-national distribution).

In the early 1980’s, Coke realized an opportunity to form a strategic partnership with the Dr Pepper Company which exchanged use of superior Coca-Cola bottling facilities for a share in Dr Pepper sales profits.  Only in regions of the country where Pepsi or 7up outbid Coke for this right did Coke resort to the production of Mr. PiBB.  This limited production meant less time and energy spent by Coke on marketing for Mr. PiBB, which explains why Mr. PiBB promotional material and packaging from the 1980’s and beyond is more difficult to find today.

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - Mr PiBB

The original Mr. PiBB logo – referred to as “Generation 1” – that was created in 1972 was used for over 18 years.  With exception of a few color changes and the use of just “PiBB” in the late 1970’s and 1980’s, the font and style remained the same.  In 1991, Coke decided to redesign the Mr. PiBB logo (Generation 2).  This was a very short-lived design because of a law suit filed in late 1992 which alleged that the new diagonal styling on cans and bottles looked too much like Dr Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - Mr PiBBPepper’s.  It was soon replaced by a new, fancier design in 1993 (Generation 3).  The next year, the Mr. PiBB head character was added to the 1993 design (Generation 4) which again, only lasted for a couple years.  It was at this time when the slogan “Put it in Your Head” was introduced and Coke placed Mr. PiBB in McDonald’s fountain drink accounts nationwide.  The Generation 5 design was adopted in 1996 (with minor revisions in 1998) and retained the “Put it in Your Head” concept.

Mr. PiBB has been produced in many different sizes of cans and bottles. Over the years, there have existed 8oz, 280ml, 12oz and 16oz steel and aluminum cans, as well as 8oz, 10oz, 300ml, 12oz, 16oz, 26oz, 32oz, 33.8oz (1 litre), 48oz, 64oz and 67.6oz (2 litre) glass bottles. Plastic bottles have also been made in 20oz, .5 litre, 1 litre and 2 litre sizes.

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday - Mr PiBB

On June 26, 2001, the history of Mr. PiBB took yet another dramatic turn.  The Coca Cola Company introduced a new version of Mr. PiBB – “Pibb Xtra” – into several Texas test-markets, including Houston and Dallas.  Several months later, Pibb Xtra made its way into other states, namely Kansas and Missouri. Currently, the new version exists in multiple prominent bottling territories. 

Text from pibbthug.com

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday – Swedish Julmust

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Julmust (Swedish jul “Christmas” and must “juice”) is a soft drink that is mainly consumed in Sweden around Christmas. During the rest of the julmust_02year it is usually hard to find in stores, but sometimes it is sold at other times of the year under the name must. At Easter the name is Påskmust (påsk “Easter”). The content is the same regardless of the marketing name, although the length of time it is stored before bottling differs; however, the beverage is more closely associated with Christmas, somewhat less with Easter and traditionally not at all with the summer. 45 million litres of julmust are consumed during December (to be compared with roughly 9 million Swedes), which is around 50% of the total soft drink volume in December and 75% of the total yearly must sales.

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Must was created by Harry Roberts and his father Robert Roberts in 1910 as a non-alcoholic alternative to beer. The syrup is still made exclusively by Roberts AB in Örebro. The original recipe is said to be locked up in a safe with only two persons knowing the full recipe.

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julmust_07Must is made of carbonated water, sugar, hop extract, malt extract, spices, caramel colouring, citric acid, and preservatives. The hops and malt extracts give the must a somewhat root beer-like taste, but much sweeter. It can be aged provided it is stored in a glass bottle. Some people buy Julmust in December only to store it a year before drinking it.

Julmust vs. Coca-Cola

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julmust_11In Sweden, julmust outsells Coca-Cola during the Christmas season; in fact, the consumption of Coca-Cola drops by as much as 50% over Christmas. This was quoted as one of the main reasons that The Coca-Cola Company broke away from their contract with the local brewer Pripps and started Coca-Cola Drycker Sverige AB instead. Coca-Cola Drycker Sverige AB produced its own julmust, albeit very slyly with The Coca-Cola Company’s name occupying only a small space on the label. Their julmust was never advertised until 2004, when Coca-Cola started marketing their julmust under the brand “Bjäre julmust”, but they bought the syrup from Roberts AB. By 2007 the “Bjäre julmust” was only sold at McDonald’s restaurants and it had completely disappeared from Coca-Colas range of products by Christmas 2008.

Outside Sweden

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Those outside Sweden who are curious to try julmust might be able to purchase and sample a bottle from a Swedish Food Market at IKEA. However, availability is not guaranteed; one is most likely to find it in stock in early December.

julmust_10Kristall Beverage Inc. in Massachusetts, USA bottles julmust for sale in the USA.

In November 2004 PepsiCo marketed a product somewhat similar in taste to julmust in the United States called Pepsi Holiday Spice. It was on sale during the 2004 and 2006 Christmas seasons.

Cost Plus World Market in the United States sells julmust during the Christmas holiday season.


This post is for my friend Rincewind who works outside his native Sweden and misses Julmust terribly. I hope this gives you some comfort till you head northwards for Christmas – Ted

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday – Jarritos

634_jarritos_02Jarritos (English: “Little Jugs”) is a popular brand of soft drink in Mexico. Jarritos was started by Don Francisco “El Güero” Hill in 1950. The Jarritos brand is currently owned by Novamex, a large independent-bottling conglomerate based in Guadalajara, Jalisco, property of the Hill & ac. Co. although it is also distributed in some areas of Mexico by the Pepsi Bottling Group or Cott.

Jarritos is made in fruit flavors and is more carbonated than popular soft drinks made in the United States or Canada. Many Jarritos varieties are naturally flavored. The word “jarrito” means “little jug” in Spanish and refers to the Mexican tradition of drinking water and other drinks in clay pottery jugs. Jarritos comes in 12.5 and 20-ounce glass and plastic as well as 1.5 liter bottles.

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History

634_jarritos_03Jarritos broke with Mexican soft drink standards by offering a larger 400 ml bottle with a coffee-flavored drink. Shortly after launching the first Jarritos in Mexico City, Francisco Hill developed a process to remove tamarind juice extract to create the first tamarind-flavored soft drink in Mexico: Jarritos Tamarindo. Hill quickly followed with Mandarin, Lemon, and Fruit Punch flavors gaining greater market share and becoming the national soft drink of Mexico. In 10 years, Jarritos became available in 80 percent of Mexico.

634_jarritos_01In 1989, the first importation of Jarritos to retail stores in the U.S. began. By 1997, Jarritos became the most popular soft drink in the U.S. among Latino consumers. The 2009 edition of the book Mexico Greatest Brands confirms that each minute 6000 bottles of Jarritos are introduced to the United States.

Text from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Soda & Soft Drink Saturday – La Casera

La Casera is a traditional Spanish brand of soda. It is one of the most popular soft drinks in Spain.

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It is a sweet fizzy drink known in Spanish-speaking countries as gaseosa. It can be served as a regular soda, although it is also customary to mix it with wine, receiving the name of “Tinto de Verano”, or beer, being called a Clara or Rubia. La Casera is also used to prepare the typical sangria.

The Company was founded in 1949 by the Duffo family in Madrid and its successful advertising campaigns soon made La Casera one of the leading beverage brands in the country. In Spain, the popularity of the product has led to the use of its name to refer to any citrus soda, regardless of the brand.

Nowadays it is part of the Cadbury-Schweppes group, who bought it in 2001.

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Soda & Soft Drink Saturday – Mission Orange Soda

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Mission Orange soda_02The company that created Mission soft drinks went through several name and location changes over the years. Initially, California Crushed Fruit in Los Angeles produced the first soft drinks. Their Mission Orange soft drink was so successful that in 1933 they formed The Mission Dry Corporation and started bottling Mission Orange soda in a unique black bottle. By the 1950’s they had become Mission of California, Inc. with offices based in New Haven, Connecticut. Throughout their total history, they manufactured soft drinks from about 1929 to 1970.

117272_md2Around 1950 they began putting their soda into 1-quart cone top cans. Some of these cans can be very valuable. One website states that in 2000 a Mission Root Beer quart cone top can went for over $3000 at auction. They also put their soft drinks into flat top cans in mission orange soda_01the 50’s, but they didn’t really catch on with the consumer until the 60’s.

Flavours that Mission soda was available in included Orange, Lemon-Lime, Coco-Pina, Black Cherry, Cream and Root Beer, among others.

Mission soda production was based in California but was bottled all over the US. Do you have a Mission story you’d like to share? If so, please mail me or post a comment.

Text from “RetroPlanet