The new flavors are intended to appeal to craft soda drinkers.
Call it the craftication of every product under the sun. Even Coca-Cola isn’t above trying to show a sense of local, handcrafted prowess—regardless of how counterintuitive that idea may be for one of the best-known brands on the planet. To wit, the soda giant is introducing two new flavors—its first since adding Vanilla Coke back in 2002—Georgia Peach and California Raspberry, which are meant to target the craft soda market.
Coca-Cola says the two state-name-dropping new fruit flavors are “locally-inspired” and are intended to harken back to the brand’s “hand-crafted heritage,” with Coke pointing out that, until 1932, the soda was mixed by hand at local soda fountains. “Soda shops would experiment with different flavors,” Coca-Cola Archivist Ted Ryan said according to Beverage Daily. “Vanilla and cherry were favorites, of course, but you’d also find locally-sourced flavors on top in different parts of the country. Peach was popular in the South and, believe it or not, maple syrup was common up north.” Along those lines, Coke says that these new official flavors were created by sourcing actual Georgia peaches and California raspberries.
As to how these particular flavors were chosen, Coca-Cola says they stemmed from actual customer feedback. The brand spoke to thousands of consumers, running through 30 potential new flavors before “peach and raspberry floated to the top,” according to Lillian Norton, senior brand manager for Coca-Cola Innovation. She also explained how the packing plays into the idea of craft by featuring logos printed directly on the bottle and the story behind the beverages on the packaging. “We know that our consumers want more transparency. They want clear ingredient information; they’re seeking out more local products. They’re shopping local, and eating local,” Norton said.
The new flavors will be sold individually or as 4-packs of 12-ounce glass bottles nationwide—meaning you should be able to grab them no matter what locality you happen to live in.