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|Manufacturer||The Coca-Cola Company|
|Country of origin||United States|
|Flavor||Black Cherry, Cherry Citrus, Citrus Lime, Grapefruit, Grapefruit Mint, Lemon, Lime and Peach|
Fresca is a grapefruit-flavored citrus soft drink created by The Coca-Cola Company. Borrowing the word Fresca (meaning "fresh") from Spanish, it was first introduced in the United States in 1966. Originally only a sugar-free diet soda, it has subsequently been sold also in sweetened form in certain markets. Since 2018, it has been marketed in the U.S. as "sparkling flavored soda", rather than as a soft drink.
Since introduction in 1966, Fresca has been marketed in the United States as a sugar-free, lime and grapefruit-flavored diet soft drink. Fresca has undergone several major ingredient changes since its introduction. It was originally sweetened with cyclamates, which were banned by the FDA in 1969, and replaced with saccharin. That was replaced by NutraSweet-brand aspartame. Around the time of the 2005 redesign, acesulfame potassium was added as a secondary sweetener.
Coca-Cola markets a sugar sweetened version of Fresca in Latin America. In 1997, The Coca-Cola Company responded to requests for this product from immigrant communities by launching it throughout the U.S. as Citra. This was a success but is instead sold as the Citrus flavor in Coca-Cola's Fanta line in areas with large Hispanic populations. In Colombia and Argentina sweetened Fresca is called Quatro and marketed using Fresca's colors and logos.
Fresca was made available in South Africa during the early 1990s with a series of colorful ads featuring British-Nigerian actor Hakeem Kae-Kazim with the slogan, "Nothing tastes like Fresca." The soft drink developed a cult following but sales were discontinued.
Fresca packaging has been redesigned several times, although advertising continues to emphasize sophistication. In 2005, Coca-Cola gave Fresca a more contemporary look, Fresca's first makeover since 1995. During this redesign, two new flavors were introduced (Sparkling Peach Citrus and Sparkling Black Cherry Citrus) and the original grapefruit flavor was renamed Sparkling Citrus. Later, "Sparkling" was dropped and the original flavor was renamed Original Citrus. Several additional flavors have been added to the line-up since 2005, although those do not seem to have survived.
Coca-Cola announced revamped packaging again in 2018 along with a new marketing campaign targeted towards millennials - the first Fresca advertising since 2008 - with the stated intention of "reeling in a new generation of drinkers unfamiliar with the brand". The marketing describes it as a "sparkling flavored soda", competing with other sparkling beverage products like La Croix and Izze.
According to Coca-Cola, the following flavors of Fresca are marketed (as of 2010):
- Original Citrus (lime & grapefruit blend)
- Black Cherry
- Peach Citrus
- Blackberry Citrus
- Strawberry Citrus
- Argentina (known as "Quatro")
- Brazil (coming soon)
- Bulgaria (International markets)
- Chile (known as "Quatro")
- Colombia (known as "Quatro")
- Costa Rica
- El Salvador
- Iceland (supply ended 2014)
- Japan (introduced winter 2015)
- Peru (available in Tres Chanchitos - La Molina)
- Philippines (coming soon)
- South Africa (supply ended circa 2004)
- United States
North America (United States, Canada):
- Carbonated water
- Citric acid
- Concentrated grapefruit juice
- Potassium citrate
- Potassium benzoate and ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (preservatives)
- Acesulfame potassium
- Natural flavors
- Glycerol ester of wood rosin
- Carob bean gum
North America (Mexico):
- Carbonated water
- Sugars (may contain cane sugar and/or high fructose corn syrup)
- Stevia (2.4 mg/100 g)
- Concentrated pink grapefruit juice
- Fresca-brand concentrate (includes artificial flavors and other trade secret additives)
- Potassium benzoate (preservative)
In popular culture
U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson, a Fresca drinker, had dedicated signal boxes installed in his White House offices. These typically featured four buzzers: one to page his secretary, one for the Chief of Staff, and two for a military valet stationed in a small office next to the Oval Office. The valet would bring Johnson either a Fresca or coffee, depending on which button the President pushed.
A bottle of Fresca stands on the office desk of Chief Mildred Proctor in the 2013 science fiction comedy film R.I.P.D., adding to the outré atmosphere of the department.
In the 1980 comedy film Caddyshack, Judge Smails (Ted Knight) dresses down Danny Noonan (Michael O'Keefe) in his office, guarantees him a college scholarship, and then ruffles his hair and asks cheerfully, "How 'bout a Fresca?"
In the Aaron Sorkin political drama The West Wing episode "The Portland Trip", Associate White House Counselor Ainsley Hayes (Emily Proctor) requests a Fresca but is informed that the White House did not stock it.
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