Talk:Coca-Cola formula

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Anyone happen to know the approximate percentage of water in Coke or Pepsi?

Um.....if only 2 people know the formula, how do the workers in their factories know how to make it?It appears we have a conundrum!

This is not a conundrum. spells out that not only do more than two people know the formula for the product, but that it's fairly widely known.


¶ I don't know where best to park this comment, but there ought to be a mention of the "New Coke"/"Classic Coke" business of about 30 years ago. Sussmanbern (talk) 00:20, 26 January 2013 (UTC)

Regarding the secrecy of the formula[edit]

The opening paragraph states that "Experienced perfumers and food scientists - today aided by modern analytical methods - can easily identify the composition of food products." Further down it says that "Amateur sleuths have tried to reverse engineer the production process and ingredients. The secret formula is the subject of books, speculation and marketing lore. The company consistently claims that all published recipes are incorrect." To me these claims are contradictory. Can someone sort this out? Dcastor 02:43, 1 February 2006 (UTC)

knowing the end result does not tell you the ingredients(since things can evaporate, burn off, etc) or the process. Even if you can figure out the input getting the correct output is complicated. Look at bread, for example. Flour, water, and yeast. Yet how exactly you do it, how long you let it rise, how long you cook it, are very complicated to reverse engineer. Even if you do get the end result you're not guaranteed to have used to same recipe. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:13, 10 April 2008 (UTC)


"1000oz Acid"...this doesn't even make sense in the context of 2.5gal of water.JD79 01:30, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

People keep adding 'amusing' ingredients to this page. I removed '20oz Humpback Whale Sperm' from the ingredient list today.--Euchrid9 18:28, 22 June 2006 (UTC)

It may be inappropriate but that's hilarious!

At the beginning, it says that the main flavors are vanilla and cinnamon, but these both feature very little in the recipes given. Which one is it?

--user:roxysmashsir43 Some where it should be stated that almost everywhere that actual Sugar is used in the soda ( as listed on the bottle) but in the US diffrent sweeteners are used ( and it does affect the tatste) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:39, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

Very late reply I know but I thought it was still worth pointing out: vanilla and cinnamon can be the main flavorings without being one of the main ingredients because both are quite strong flavours. Most recipes that use vanilla only require a few drops (unless you're making things on a commercial scale) and unless you want it to be the main flavor cinnamon is often added simply by putting an unbroken cinnamon stick in while cooking, then removing it afterwards. (talk) 14:49, 10 August 2014 (UTC)

The B-12 Connection[edit]

According to (Dr. Duke's Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases. [Online Database] 29 June 2006.), american ginseng and coca contain vitamin B-12. The Coca-Cola Company adds coca extract to Coca-Cola.

The vitamin B-12 in coca is addictive like cocaine. It is called inuline (not inulin). Unlike cocaine, it is physically addictive.

Inuline is neither cyanocobalamine nor cobalamin.

Inuline (natural flavor) is only added to foods and beverages in sub-dietary amounts, as coca is very expensive.

Inuline is illegal under international law. The United States is not signatory to international drug law. It is illegal in the United States to mark "inuline" as anything other than "natural flavor" on the ingredients list of prepared foods.

Plants produce inuline when their leaves are heavily harvested. Roots and fruits contain trace cyanocobalamin due to bacteria, animal life, or fungus. American ginseng leaves also contain cobalt (thus cobalamin) and are used to make the ginseng extract added to sprite and 7-up. 07:50, 30 June 2006 (UTC)Dyjak

The article on vitamin B-12 doesn't say it's addictive, or that it can be found in any plants, except a Chinese herb (Angelica sinensis). Philbert2.71828 15:37, 30 June 2006 (UTC)

A pound of angelica sinensis root would give the RDI for B-12. Might as well eat a pound of peas...pisum sativum and angelica sinensis contain cyanocobalamin from bacteria.

Wikisource or Wikibooks recipe[edit]

Shouldn't this be copied to one of our sister projects? "Wikipedia is not an indiscriminate collection of information" - WP:NOT - that includes recipes. I think the recipies wikibook or wikisource would be a better place for this. 03:17, 25 September 2006 (UTC)

I realize it's been a while since this comment was made... but it makes sense for it to have its own article on Wikipedia, because the article is not simply the recipe. It doesn't even claim to be the real recipe. The Coca-Cola recipe has a cultural status that is unique, which is what the article deals with, and the inclusion of "proposed recipes" is useful in the demonstration of the mystery surrounding it in popular culture. 22:16, 3 January 2007 (UTC)


Going through the recipes, trying to make them vaguely meaningful to non-Americans who make a large effort, I came across 'oil' apparently as a measure of some kind. I can't see it on Wikipedia anywhere. What does it mean? Skittle 21:39, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

Some of your links point at disambiguation pages; there are for example several different gallons. It would more useful to us non-Americans if we were told which gallon the recipe refers to:-)Punainen Nörtti 11:41, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
Being a non-America, I didn't know :-) Skittle 13:48, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
It does not include a unit of measurement, just the proportions - oil is a reference to it being oil derived from the ingredients. -- (talk) 04:59, 14 March 2010 (UTC)


If the composition of the magic ingredient is truly known only to very few, wouldn't this violate laws about food labelling and informing consumers about any possible health side-effects of the products they're consuming? People with all manner of weird allegies are well advised not to drink or eat anything whose composition they are not fully aware of. People die from minute traces of peanuts, so who knows what's in Coke. Wouldn't this marketing strategy tend to act as a disincentive to many people to actually buy the product? Does Coca-Cola care as long as they're selling million of bottles every day? JackofOz 06:41, 10 November 2006 (UTC)

I think there's only a few allergens that have to be labeled on things in the US/EU. I'll try and find a list. I think it had peanuts, treenuts, shellfish, egg, sesame seeds, sulphates and I can't remember what else. Something got added recently. Skittle 15:45, 10 November 2006 (UTC)
If you read ingredients, it is quite usual for there to be a generic "flavourings" entry... the two things closest to hand, a Pringles tube and an Aldi noodle tub both have them. The Aldi one does note mustard as an allergen, so that I suppose must be one for Skittle's list. 18:03, 5 May 2007 (UTC)
A company must state all there ingredents or else they maybe sued if someone falls ill. There may however be a secret way of mixing it all togther —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:42, 9 June 2008 (UTC)

Kosher Coke[edit]

The Kosher version can easily be identified in cans by the yellow top rim. Kosher Coke in bottles uses a yellow cap, but this is not a 100% reliable method to identify it due to yellow (and other colors) caps being used for various contests, games and promotions. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Bizzybody (talkcontribs) 03:54, 22 January 2007 (UTC).

Jan 2007 rewording, especially the first paragraph[edit]

I researched and started this article years ago and am surprised how jumbled and unreadable the first paragraph becomes. It now flows better and is more encyclopedic. --Robertkeller 00:18, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Manufacturing process ambiguity[edit]

Someone should clarify this... So suppose only a handful of people know the formula, then how does Coca Cola handle

a. manufacturing the product in great quantites
are these two people in the know are at the cauldron 24/7 mixing "soup"?

b. handle international manufacturing all across Europe, Asia and the US?
Surely you can't get coca leaves and other non-standard ingredients everywhere, and I doubt exporting the concentrate from the US would be such a viable idea...

To me it sounds just like a generic chemical recipe, with no natural ingridients, there's just no way in the world they could get so many limes and extracts to quench the thirst of billions of people! It probably consists of purely artificial flavoring, phosphoric acid, sugar (or replacement) and colorant.

Also, how do they manage to maintain secrecy? Surely there are many persons around the world involved in preparation of the concentrate, they can't feed this "two people" bullshit on us. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 20:14, 6 April 2007 (UTC). I heard that two separate companies/plants/ what have you each do half the formula and ship it to a third location to be mixed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:02, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

Sugar -> HFCS[edit]

A citation was needed for the change from sugar to High Fructose Corn Syrup. The below quote was found in Consumer Reports [1] "says Scott Williamson, a spokesman for the Coca-Cola Co. Less-expensive HFCS replaced sugar in most American-made Coke in the early 1980s." --rrandallx 12:57, 8 July 2015 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

The article states the formula changed to High Fructose Corn Syrup from sugar, however the rest of the world doesn't subsidise corn production so highly. The UK version still uses sugar only, does the rest of the world still do the same, and where would this be listed? --aslate 12:43, 10 April 2007 (UTC)

In Iceland, Sugar is still used, not HFCS, we also have a higher carbonation of the smallest glass bottle type then elsewhere cos of a manufacturing mistake when Coke first got here. ¨¨¨¨ —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:44, 11 January 2008 (UTC)

As of 19 May 2009, in the UK, my bottle of coke here has sugar, not fructose syrup



Nutrition information: Energy 180 kJ (43,000 cal), Protein 0g, Carbohydrate 10.6g, Of which sugars 10.6g, Fat 0g. Of which saturates 0g. Fibre 0g. Sodium 0g.

My bottle of diet coke has:


SimonTrew (talk) 00:53, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, people here in the States talk about foreign Coke tasting better due to the use of suger instead of corn syrup. I personaly don't think the taste is better, necessarily, but its less familiar and thus more interesting. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:28, 28 October 2009 (UTC)


The section regarding the use of coca leaves cites an article from the Washington Times that I could not find anywhere in their archived articles. A google search turned up only wikipedia references to this article. I think we should consider removing this assertion until a readable copy of this article is made available. The link provided takes you to the front page of the Washington Times, not to the purported article. Skafkas 01:43, 4 December 2007 (UTC)

What is your precise concern? That you cannot obtain the article online or the information about coca extracts the reference supports? Searching for a portion of the quote within the reference got me to an 'archive' of the article on which has an AP byline with an indication it also appeared in the LATimes. Perhaps because it was an AP article, the WashTimes could no longer keep it in an online archive. Regardless, references on Wikipedia are not required to be available online, just appropriately cited and that they do exist someplace. As to the information about the coca extract, you can find other references by searching on some of the keywords from the quote (Stepan Maywood coca), such as this NYTimes article since they have opened up their archives. Hope this helps. AUTiger » talk 06:53, 4 December 2007 (UTC)
A reference need to be clickable to be a reliable and verifiable source, and the "purported article" jibe is as unjustified as the request to remove the "assertion". You can check on the article now for a source from The New York Times added to address the concerns of even the most cynical. Alansohn 21:14, 4 December 2007 (UTC)
Thank you for responding. I appreciate your response. I read the NY Times article and I am satisfied. I meant no offense, just wanted to check the source and read more, and wasn't able to do so.Skafkas (talk) 13:22, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

I made an edit to the following: "Because cocaine is naturally present in coca leaves, some argue ... Coca-Cola uses "spent", or treated, coca leaves, .... Others contend that this process cannot extract all of the cocaine alkaloids at a molecular level, and so the drink still contains trace amounts of the stimulant." As structured, with the "some argue" and "others contend", there is a false dichotomy. The inverse of the first statement would have Coca-Cola using UNtreated, full cocaine coca leaves. Nobody is arguing that this is the case. The inverse of the second statement would be that there are not trace levels of cocaine in the beverage. I don't think anybody knowledgable about extraction would argue that ALL cocaine is removed; 99+%, sure. Coke execs might argue that there is absolutely no cocaine in Coca-Cola. I wouldn't believe them, but it'd be worth citing if that has been stated. I removed the phrase "some argue", and changed "others contend" to "some contend". (talk) 01:06, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

Cagegory:Coca-Cola is itself a category within Cagegory:Cola. — Robert Greer (talk) 19:30, 7 December 2008 (UTC)

I removed "Some contend that this process cannot extract all of the cocaine (...)", since it was sourced only to a book with anecdotes, namely "Big Secrets" by Poundstone. Higher quality sources that the trace amounts of cocaine left are very very small. --Enric Naval (talk) 11:04, 20 February 2012 (UTC)

Regional/country variations in formula?[edit]

The "marketing victory" section of the [Inca Kola] article indicates that Coca-Cola alters their formula in only three countries to meet local preference (e.g. in Peru, for increased sweetness). However, that fact in the Wikipedia article is unreferenced. If anyone can verify this, it should be included in that article and in this one as well. Migp (talk) 20:27, 29 March 2009 (UTC)

Commercial on The Formula[edit]

Should the commercial be notable: It is found in movie theatres (Or at least Cinemark Mesa): It says if anything happened to one of the two guys who invented Coke then:

  • BBQs would be ravonous.
  • Santa would be sleepy.
  • Summers would be heating (and our heads would be giant Popcorn.)
  • A hole would go through the universe (talk) 04:29, 3 April 2009 (UTC)

Convert templates[edit]

Hey Peter. Re Coca-Cola formula I did the convert templates for this formula. If there is anything really wrong with them go ahead and fix em up, but I was just converting what was already there, and it was hard occasionally to make sense of it. Since I think the original authors of those sections are not watching this site, I had to leave it be until someone else did it. Thanks you did! SimonTrew (talk) 16:29, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

BTW you may notice the convert template is supposed to take mixed units, but only does for some units. I have asked for it to be improved. So it does make some sense soever; it may not right now. To say 1 oz = 28.3 g makes no sense whatsoever. Either 30 or 2 but that's ridiculous, that is EXACTLY why I spent time under MOS to try to get a reasonable feel for the accuracy of the units of measure. SimonTrew (talk) 16:38, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

Coca Cola formula#purported secret recipes
2.5 US gal (9.46 l; 2.08 imp gal) versus 2 12 US gal (9.5 l; 2.1 imp gal). You will notice that the second (latter) conversion has a real problem and makes no sense whatsoever and is totally wrong. The use of common fractions in the template:convert needs a lot of tweeking. Peter Horn 16:45, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
I see that the problem has been fixed. Hooray. Peter Horn 14:12, 13 May 2009 (UTC)

Ah, I think I see part of your intent. The small measures for additives were quite bollox yeah I was wondering, but I ended up just doing them literally. It does seem quite odd very small (I work in molecular modelling so am used to small measures but that seems a bit too small, nonsense, bollox, etc) so no worries with you fixing them up. I went to fractions of ounces in the section after but you might want to check them too. SimonTrew (talk) 16:46, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

And I thought I didn't do too badly by making all the converts look like a lil table itself. SimonTrew (talk) 16:49, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

Peter yeah there was a really odd problem in the convert somewhere and I have pointed it out to the people who write that template

The difficulty is do you just fix the article or do you fix the template? When the template is fixed, and it's probably just a stupid error in a conversion, then EVERY article will get the right number. If we all just fix individual articles, they stand good, but other articles will still suffer the problem. I think you are right it was the fluid ounce one, I basically tossed a coin and thought what is the best to do here?

Best wishes SimonTrew (talk) 16:54, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

Of course, of course, the template(s) incorporating common fractions, including the sample above, need to be fixed so that the correct values will automatically appear in all articles. Peter Horn 17:09, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
I just tried, and the common fraction fixup does not work with drachm and adj=on. In fact it adds an S even though I never asked it to. SimonTrew (talk) 17:34, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Lets try to fix it: 2 12 US gal (9.5 l; 2.1 imp gal) to 2 12 US gal (9.46 L; 2.08 imp gal). No luck so far. Peter Horn 01:20, 13 May 2009 (UTC)
I've fixed up a couple. I can't believe that koka nuts were THAT small (one fiftieth of a drachm, 0.037 g) so have put as one fifth of a drachm. I imagine original author accidentally added an extra 0. SimonTrew (talk) 16:16, 13 May 2009 (UTC)
US & imperial volumes don't work with fractions & it'll be a while before they do so just fix the article for now. JIMp talk·cont 23:52, 15 July 2009 (UTC)


ISTR Coca-cola publishing a book containing the recipe. When someone said "isn't it secret" the exec shrugged his shoulders. This was round about the launch time of the new Coke. Rich Farmbrough, 10:07, 25 June 2009 (UTC).

Fact of the matter is most jurisdictions require full disclosure of ingrediatients in manufactiured food products and pretty much all on food labels, though actual quantities need not be given (they usually must be listed largest to smallest in order of volume, at least in the EU, but trace ingredients need not be listed and small things can simply be lumped together e.g. "flavourings"). So really the "secret recipe" thing is largely a myth anyway. I suppose there is some leeway for having to give out the exact quantities used but there can be no "secret ingredients". SimonTrew (talk) 10:12, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
I believe the recipe varies in different places anyway, better to suit local tastes. SimonTrew (talk) 10:12, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
What's the point in keeping the recipe a secret? Anyone who wanted to could reverse engineer it and make a perfect copy. (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 16:20, 30 April 2011 (UTC).

Different packaging, different Formula[edit]

The coke in the south eastern states in 6packs of 8oz bottles tastes different from the coke in cans, and I don't mean just from the metallic taste of the can and the glass taste of the bottle; Even when I pour the coke out, it tastes different. Could the formula be slightly different for the 8 oz coke classic bottles? Or is it that the coke reacts with the aluminum can? Krymson (talk) 14:03, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

I removed this section about press coverage of forumla reveal[edit]

From certain sources, today, 15th of February, say that the recipe has been discovered from a more than 30 year old newspaper. It says that coca-cola drinks have all the ingredients listed above, but contain a certain amount of cocaine and alcohol.

This information certainly should be in the article but I don’t have time to rewrite it. It shouldn’t include ”today” and it should specify that it was claimed to be the original formula, otherwise the cocaine stuff makes no sense —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:59, 16 February 2011 (UTC)

This info was already in the section about This American Life. Yngvadottir (talk) 06:15, 16 February 2011 (UTC)

Mexican Coke[edit]

The Mexican Coke section is just plain wacky. A perusal of message comments in various places found with a Google search indicates no comment from young people and pre new coke formula. The vast majority of comments are from older people saying the Mexican product is like the product they remember. (talk) 20:07, 12 August 2011 (UTC)

It's hardly academic, but me and my friends who like it like it because it's made with cane sugar instead of HCFS, not because of some belief in it being an older formula. I thought that that was why it was popular with people who didn't grow up with it but I can't think of a source offhand ( (talk) 02:33, 18 May 2012 (UTC))

Reed recipe[edit]

How come a recipe of "A" is acceptable to contain "fluid extract of A" ? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:10, 15 July 2018 (UTC)

Recipe safety[edit]

The recipes shown here seem to call for a huge amount of caffeine. For example, the 1888 one calls for 28g of Caffeine citrate. The page on caffeine citrate seems (to my reading) to indicate that the dose ratio of caffeine citrate to caffeine is about 2:1 (in other words, each gram of caffeine citrate delivers the same amount of caffeine as 0.5 g of pure caffeine). The recipe seems to produce about 3 gallons of "Coca-Cola" (2.5 gal of water plus about 2 quarts of other ingredients). This would come out to 14 grams of caffeine dose in 3 gallons of soda, or about 440mg of caffeine per 12 oz of soda. That is about 4 times the concentration which is stated on a can of actual Coke. One of the other recipes calls for even more "citrate of caffeine" (I think it says 110g). Around 500mg in a single dose of caffeine will usually begin to cause serious effects and more than 1 gram is likely to cause acute mania from what I've read - I think there should be a disclaimer on these recipes which states that they may not be safe as written. Sbreheny (talk) 05:08, 1 November 2011 (UTC)

Coca-Cola syrup?[edit]

Is Coca-Cola a syrup? Pubserv (talk) 18:50, 27 August 2013 (UTC)

I think the opening of the article makes this clear: "The Coca-Cola formula is The Coca-Cola Company's secret recipe for Coca-Cola syrup that bottlers combine with carbonated water to create its line of cola soft drinks." Syrup is also shipped for use in dispensing machines, as at convenience stores and restaurants. Yngvadottir (talk) 19:34, 27 August 2013 (UTC)

600 ml bottle??[edit]

In Coke's home country (the US), the soft drink comes in 8oz., 12 oz., 20 oz., 24 oz., 1 l., and 2 l. bottles, and 7.5 oz., 8 oz., 12 oz., 16 oz. cans. The respective approximate metric equivalents are: 237 ml, 355 ml, 591 ml, 710 ml, 1000 ml, 2000 ml, 222 ml, 237 ml, 355 ml, and 473 ml.

Not a 600 ml size in the lot.

How about giving a size that matches an actual marketed package? One liter is both typical and generic. (talk) 19:19, 28 April 2016 (UTC)

The 600ml figure is in relation to sugar content. It's an Australian source, where presumably they sell it in 600ml bottles, and the source refers to sugar content in their local recipe. It should stay as 600ml. Andy Dingley (talk) 19:32, 28 April 2016 (UTC)
Do they actually sell it in 600ml bottles, or is it just presumed that they do? (talk) 19:39, 28 April 2016 (UTC)
Firstly, it doesn't matter. It's what the source says. The rest is up to them - if we trust them (i.e. they meet WP:RS) then we leave it up to them to judge what units too use.
Secondly, a moment's searching shows that this is indeed the Aussie bottle size.
Andy Dingley (talk) 19:47, 28 April 2016 (UTC)
I am Australian and, yes, not only do they sell Coke - and numerous other beverages - in a 600ml plastic bottle, it is probably the most popular way to buy a one-off soda in Australia; when you aren't buying it in 1.25l or 2l bottles from the supermarket. In other words, if you go to a pie shop, say, to buy a one-off soda to drink now with your lunch - as opposed to buying soda in bulk at the supermarket to put in the fridge and drink at home later - then you will most likely buy a 600ml bottle. If that makes sense? Years ago we mostly drank from 375ml cans, but then a beverage war occurred in which one company came out with a 375ml bottle, then the opposition came out with a 400ml bottle, then the original company brought out a 500ml bottle, then that kept going until there were 750ml bottles, but that got to be a bit much and so eventually 600ml became the most popular size, the escalation war stopped, and now 600ml bottles have been the 'norm' for many years. In other news, the Australian climate being what it is, we have the most amazing range of cold beverages here! We have a better selection than any other country I have ever visited. It's worth coming here just to sample all the awesome drinks we have... ;-) FillsHerTease (talk) 06:19, 27 May 2017 (UTC)

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Removal of erroneous [sic] in Commercial Teaser section[edit]

The Commercial Teaser Section stated that:

"...Ingredients listed in the commercial included nutmeg oil, lime juice, cocoa [sic], vanilla extract, caffeine, "flavoring", and a smile."

A while go now I removed the erroneous "[sic]" which occurs after the word "cocoa", but it was reverted without comment or explanation. "[sic]" - which is an abbreviation of 'sic erat scriptum', which in turn is Latin for 'thus it had been written' - is used when there is a mistake in the quotation that's being used. It informs the reader that the mistake was made by the original author and not by the person who is repeating it. In other words there is no reason to use "[sic]" unless there is a mistake in the original quotation. The use of "[sic]" in this case implies that there is something wrong with the Coca Cola company including "cocoa" as one of the ingredients in Coke (as per the screenshot to the right of this text, you can see the formula includes "caffeine/cocoa"). There is nothing wrong with that as "cocoa" is a legitimate potential ingredient. It is certainly every bit as legitimate an ingredient as a smiley face! Please do not revert this change without a discussion as the "[sic]" does not belong and should be left out. Further to this, there is no reason for "flavoring" to be in quotation marks either and those should also be removed, though that is a different discussion... FillsHerTease (talk) 06:06, 27 May 2017 (UTC)