Frequently Asked Questions
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Our ingredients and manufacturing processes are rigorously regulated by government and health authorities in more than 200 countries. All of them have consistently recognised Coca‑Cola as a non-alcoholic product.
Did you know? Coca‑Cola is the world’s largest non-alcoholic drinks company.
Find out why we’ve adopted the Department of Health’s voluntary front-of-pack labelling scheme.
There is 33 mg in a 330 ml can of Coca‑Cola. People are often surprised when they learn that a can of Coca‑Cola contains much less caffeine than the same amount of coffee.
Every day, millions of people enjoy beverages with caffeine including coffee, tea and soft drinks. Because caffeine has been consumed for centuries, we know a lot about it – it’s widely studied and is known to be safe at the levels used in our beverages.
We know that not everyone drinks caffeine and not everyone wants to drink it all the time, so we also offer a range of caffeine-free beverages, including TAB so people can make the choice for themselves and their families.
A low-calorie sweetener.
We use aspartame in combination with another low-calorie sweetener, acesulfame-K, to give a sweet taste to some of our drinks.
Did you know? Aspartame is about 200 times sweeter than sugar.
A sugar free sweetener from natural sources.
Stevia leaves contain a unique source of natural sweetness. They’re calorie free. The plant itself belongs to the chrysanthemum family. We use stevia plant extract to reduce the sugar and calories in some of our drinks such as Sprite, glaceau vitaminwater and Coca‑Cola Life.
Did you know? Stevia has been used in South America to flavour drinks for more than 200 years.
No. Coca‑Cola does not contain cocaine or any other harmful substance, and cocaine has never been an added ingredient in Coca‑Cola.
This is not true. Coca‑Cola Africa will never ask people to pay funds to secure an interview opportunity to get a job with our organisation.
Rumour-mongers have claimed that Coca‑Cola, due to its acidic nature, can be used to clean toilets and corroded car batteries, loosen rusted bolts and remove rust spots from car bumpers, get rid of grease from clothing and clean road haze from windshields.
It’s true there is a small amount of edible acid present in Coca‑Cola – just as there is in many foods and drinks. And it’s quite possible that this edible acid could do the things the rumour-mongers claim. But we wouldn’t recommend using it for any of these purposes. Just stick to the regular cleaning products…
Did you know? The edible acid in Coca‑Cola is perfectly safe to drink. It’s not even as strong as your natural stomach acid.
No. We don’t support any religions. Nor do we support any political causes, governments or nation-states.
Yes. We’re aware there are hoax emails and text messages in circulation that claim – quite falsely – to belong to a Coca‑Cola promotion. They’re scams designed to extract financial information from you. So please ignore them.
Signs of a hoax Coca‑Cola email
- looks official and appears to come from a financial institution
- contains a claim number and may even include a false cheque that appears to be from Coca‑Cola
- has spelling and grammar errors
- uses improper company trademarks
- is sent from a free, non-corporate email account
- asks for personal information and promises a quick financial gain.
The basic ingredients and process used to make Coca‑Cola are the same in all countries, although people perceive taste in very different ways. It is possible for the same soft drink to vary slightly in taste due to other factors such as the temperature at which it is consumed, the foods with which it is consumed, or the conditions in which it is stored prior to consumption.
Whether you drink it from a can or a bottle, Coca‑Cola is always the same. It’s the same recipe, the same ingredients and the same manufacturing process every time.
Did you know? Your perception of taste can be influenced by lots of things, like how cold the Coca‑Cola is or whether you drink it straight from the can or pour it into a glass.
The Coca‑Cola Company is constantly investigating consumer demand of our products and the availability of the various flavours is driven by consumer demand.
The taste. Both drinks are sugar free and calorie free. Coca‑Cola Zero Sugar looks and tastes more like Coca‑Cola Classic, while Coke Light has a different blend of flavours which gives it a lighter taste.
Did you know? Coke Light was our first sugar free cola, which we launched in 1983. This was followed by Coca‑Cola Zero in 2006, and then replaced by Coca‑Cola Zero Sugar in 2016.
A new recipe that makes Coca‑Cola Zero Sugar taste even more like the original Coca‑Cola (Coca‑Cola Classic) and without the sugar.
A new name – Coca‑Cola Zero Sugar – to communicate more clearly that the drink contains no sugar.
A new look – New packaging to reflect our global one brand strategy and extend the iconic appeal of the Coca‑Cola brand and red disc to the no sugar version. Looks more like Coca‑Cola Original.
Diabetics can drink Coca Cola Light/ Zero however we recommend that you have a chat with your doctor about diabetes and your dietary requirements.
Caffeine is a mild stimulant, and if you have it regularly and then stop abruptly, you may experience some headaches or other minor effects. But most of us can reduce or eliminate caffeine from our diets without serious problems.
Many people around the world enjoy consuming caffeine every day, in drinks like coffee, tea and soft drinks. People are often surprised to learn that Coca‑Cola actually contains much less caffeine than in the same amount of coffee.
We know that not everyone drinks caffeine and not everyone wants to drink it all the time. We also offer a range of caffeine-free drinks so people can make a choice for them and their families.
Did you know? We offer a range of sparkling soft drinks made without caffeine, such as Caffeine-Free Diet Coke, Sprite, Lilt and Fanta.
Powerade is not targeted at children as our market however, we provide information on how much sugar and how many calories are in our beverages, so people can choose what makes sense for them and their families. If you have concerns we would recommend speaking to a doctor.
Yes. The Food Standards Agency recommends that pregnant women shouldn’t take more than 200mg of caffeine a day. A can of Coca‑Cola Classic contains 32mg of caffeine and a can of Diet Coke contains 42mg.
Did you know? We offer several caffeine free soft drinks including Caffeine-Free Diet Coke, Oasis, Fanta, Lilt, Sprite, 5 Alive and of course, glacéau smartwater.
You can consume Powerade as our products are safe however we suggest you speak to a doctor with specific questions about dietary requirements during pregnancy.
We recommend that anyone with diabetes who has questions about their diet contact their doctor.
For people who want to reduce their sugar and calorie intake, including those with diabetes, we offer a variety of great-tasting drinks with reduced, low or no sugar and calories, like Diet Coke, Coca‑Cola Zero Sugar, Fanta Zero and Sprite Zero. It’s also why we offer many of our drinks in small pack sizes. We provide information on how much sugar and how many calories are in our drinks, so people can choose what makes sense for them and their families
Pregnant women are advised to limit their daily intake of caffeine to 200mg a day.
Thousands of people. The Coca‑Cola Company is a public company that trades its shares on the New York stock exchange - so we are 'owned' by our thousands of shareholders and investors around the world.
Did you know? The first Coca‑Cola shares were issued in 1919 and the initial stock symbol used for The Coca‑Cola Company was CCO. By 1923, the symbol "KO" replaced "CCO."
Yes, but in a good way.
The formula for making Coca‑Cola is a trade secret. We have protected the special taste of Coca‑Cola for more than 130 years. Only The Coca‑Cola Company knows how to make Coca‑Cola. That way, when you buy one of our drinks, you can be sure you’re getting the same delicious and refreshing experience time and time again!
Did you know? The most closely guarded and best-kept secret in the food and drinks industry, the Coca‑Cola formula is a complex blend of natural flavours. Although it has been frequently imitated, it has never been replicated.
More than 200 countries. It's actually quite difficult to think of a country where it's not available. Even in countries where we do not manufacture Coca‑Cola, many entrepreneurs will import it from neighbouring countries.
The Vault of the Secret Formula at the World of Coca‑Cola in the United States.
The secret formula of Coca‑Cola has been on an eventful journey over the years:
1886 – Dr. John S. Pemberton invents Coca‑Cola in Atlanta.
1892 – Asa Candler buys the rights to the Coca‑Cola business and the secret formula.
1919 – Ernest Woodruff and a group of investors buy the company from Candler, using the secret formula as collateral for a loan. Woodruff asks Candler's son to write the formula down and places the paper in a vault in the Guaranty Bank in New York.
1925 – Woodruff repays his loan and redeems the secret formula, bringing it back home to Atlanta and placing it in Trust Company Bank.
2011 – After 86 years, the secret formula is moved to the World of Coca‑Cola in Atlanta. Thousands of people visit the Vault of the Secret Formula every year.
Did you know? Only a few people in the world know the secret formula of Coca‑Cola.
1892. While Coca‑Cola was invented and first sold in 1888, the secret formula and brand was bought in 1889 by Asa Griggs Candler, who incorporated The Coca‑Cola Company three years later. On 5 September, 1919, a consortium of businessmen led by Ernest Woodruff, Robert W. Woodruff's father, purchased The Coca‑Cola Company for $25 million and it went on the New York stock market.
1969. The white swirl or wave – which we call the Dynamic Ribbon - was part of a graphic re-design in the late sixties. The logo design for Coca‑Cola in the 1970s was based on a bold, dramatic curve, reflecting the unique shape of the Contour Bottle.
Dr John S Pemberton. He invented Coca‑Cola on 8th May 1886 in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr Pemberton tried it out on customers at his local chemist, Jacobs' Pharmacy, where it proved so popular it immediately went on sale at five cents a glass.
Did you know? It was Dr Pemberton's friend and business partner, Frank M Robinson, who came up with the name Coca‑Cola. He wrote it out by hand in the Spencerian script that we still use as our logo.
The Root Glass Company of Indiana. They created the iconic glass Coca‑Cola Contour Bottle in 1915. The Contour Bottle was designed to help Coca‑Cola stand out from other drinks at the time, and the design brief was to ensure that the bottle was recognisable even in the dark, or if it was broken.
Did you know? In 1977 the Coca‑Cola Contour Bottle received a rare distinction for packaging when it was granted registration as a trademark by the United States Patent Office.
Thank you for submitting your awesome proposal and for choosing us to be your sponsorship partner!
The Coca‑Cola Company is committed to responsible marketing of its products and has a history of aligning its commercial practices with its values, as well as its sustainability and business goals.
Coca‑Cola Africa Pty Ltd welcomes any submissions/proposals for:
- Sponsorship requests, i.e., sports activations, etc.
- Media Partnerships.
- Merchandise requests/proposals.
Coca‑Cola Africa Pty Ltd will not consider any submissions/proposals that are related to:
- Formula modifications to any of our existing products.
Coca‑Cola Africa Pty Ltd does not sponsor the following:
- Teams or events unless they provide mass market following on either a provincial or national level.
- Teams or events where the sponsorship is shared with another non-alcoholic ready-to-drink beverage partner.
Coca‑Cola Africa Pty Ltd will evaluate each submission/proposal according to the following criteria:
- Does the proposal contribute to our global commitment to a World Without Waste?
- Is the proposal aligned with our brand, business and communication objectives?
- Is the proposal aligned with our target market?
- Does the proposal have sufficient media support to reach our target market?
- Does the proposal provide sufficient commercial returns?
- Does the proposal promote a healthy and active lifestyle?
Should your proposal/submission meet these criteria, please submit it via email to email@example.com and our team will evaluate your proposal and you can expect a formal response within 14 days of submission.
Your proposal should contain the following information:
- Name and surname of contact person.
- Cellphone number and email address of contact person.
- Company name.
- Project name.
- Date of the event and where it will take place.
- Details of target market and any relevant market research.
- Media and PR plan.
- List of confirmed current sponsors and past sponsors across all categories.
Please send your proposals to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yes. We believe it’s important for us to be active members of our local communities and to make a positive difference where we do business. We have a long history of bringing people together through our support of community projects and charities. Here are some of the projects we’re involved with:
Launched in 2014, ParkLives is delivered in partnership with local authorities and our charity partner StreetGames, and offers a long-term programme of daily fun and free activities in 45 locations, including ten major cities across the UK. ParkLives encourages people to get outdoors, meet new people and enjoy the parks and green spaces in their local community. Everyone is welcome and there are a huge range of activities to suit all ages and abilities.
Find out more information about ParkLives: http://www.parklives.com
Since 2011, we’ve had a partnership with sports charity StreetGames, which aims to make sport more widely available for young people in disadvantaged communities, and use the power of sport to change communities and young people’s lives for the better. Through StreetGames, we are able to bring our ParkLives scheme to a further 35 more locations across the country.
Find out more information about StreetGames: http://www.streetgames.org/
World Wildlife Fund (WWF)
We’ve had a global partnership with World Wildlife Fund for almost a decade, which is one of the world’s leading conservation organisations. On a global level, we have agreed seven ambitious goals for 2020 to help protect our environment. On a local level here in Great Britain, we are focusing on providing a thriving future for England’s rivers, by working with local partners like the Rivers Trust in East Anglia to promote sustainable water-sensitive farming to help protect the region’s unique chalk streams.
Find out more information about World Wildlife Fund: http://www.wwf.org.uk/
We’re a founding partner and global sponsor of Special Olympics, which runs year-round sports training and competition programmes for athletes with intellectual disabilities. We’re also a founding partner and supporter on a national level, since Special Olympics GB was first established in Great Britain in 1978. Through our annual funding we cover vital running costs for the charity, and our employees get involved with fundraising and volunteering.
Find out more information about Special Olympics GB: http://www.specialolympicsgb.org.uk/
We recognise that women are a powerful global economic force, but we’re also aware of the unique challenges they face. In 2010, we established our 5by20 initiative, which is our global commitment to enable the economic empowerment of 5 million women entrepreneurs by 2020. This means we’re focusing on helping women earn a living through a connection with our business in some way - from small business owners, such as fruit farmers growing some of our ingredients to micro-retailers and artisans, recycling packaging to make jewellery or bags or other goods to sell. We work with partners all over the world to help them overcome some of the barriers to setting up their own business by offering access to training courses, small loans and networking connections with peers and mentors.
To-date, we’ve reached a total of more than 1.2 million women entrepreneurs across 60 countries. Get more facts about the initiative in our 5by20 infographic.
Since 2007 we’ve partnered with the Department of Transport’s THINK! road safety campaign to launch Designated Driver, which rewards those who volunteer to drive friends and family over the festive party season with free soft drinks, so they can celebrate too. It’s part of our commitment to responsible marketing and, as the world’s largest non-alcoholic drinks company, to build a responsible drinking culture and help people have a safe and enjoyable time over Christmas and New Year’s Eve.
Find out more information about THINK!: http://think.direct.gov.uk/
We have a global charity foundation called The Coca‑Cola Foundation, which awards grants throughout the year to charities and non-profit organisations. All requests for community support in the form of grants or sponsorships must be submitted through our online application system.
Did you know? Since its inception in 1984, The Coca‑Cola Foundation has given back more than $820 million to local communities worldwide.
Download a complete list of 2015 Foundation grants and corporate donations.
Since 1928. We’re the longest-running, continuous sponsor of both the Summer and Winter Olympic Games. We believe the Olympic Movement is a force for good, bringing people and countries together, and we’re proud to use our name to raise its profile and support the world's most watched and revered international sporting event.
Did you know? Since 1992, we’ve also supported the Olympic Torch Relay, which provides a unique opportunity to share values of unity, pride, optimism and inspiration with people all over the world.
Sustainability is at the heart of the way Coca‑Cola does business. We have ambitious goals and recognise there is a lot more we can do. But on key issues such as energy use, waste reduction and packaging we believe we are moving in the right direction.
We believe climate change is a profound challenge that will require government, business and civil society to work together – and we have a role to play. Globally, we aim to be the beverage industry leader in energy conservation and climate protection by improving energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions across our facilities, our refrigeration equipment and our transportation fleet.
Specifically, our goal is to reduce the carbon emissions of the drink in your hand by 25% through our entire value chain.
Clean, accessible water is essential to the health of communities, and we are committed to being a good steward of this precious resource. Our goal is to be water neutral, which means returning to nature 100% of the water we use in our beverages and their production. We are working to reach 100% by 2020.
In the Southern African Business Unit, we have improved water use efficiency by 22% from 2010 to 2014, and 446 million litres of the water used in our finished beverages was replenished in 2014.
All of our facilities have completed source water protection plans to ensure there is enough safe, quality water in the surrounding areas.
We produce bottled water to meet people’s needs for taste, convenience and portability. With bottled water and all our beverages, we are committed to using resources responsibly and reducing our environmental footprint. The majority of our bottles and cans are 100% recyclable, and we support local recycling programs.
In South Africa, returnable glass and returnable PET bottles are reused over and over until damaged, and then they get recycled. In 2016, 57% of non-returnable PET bottles were collected and recycled in South Africa.
We are also investing in packaging innovations that use less total material such as the light weighting of our packaging and increasing renewable materials such as Bio-plastics. Valpre is available in PlantBottle packaging, which is made with up to 30% plant-based materials. Our ultimate goal is to commercialize PET plastic that is 100% plant-based and produced from local bio-waste.
We want everyone to recycle more and waste less. However, some recycling programs – such as forced deposit programs – remove certain materials from the collection streams and end up inconveniencing people who prefer “one stop” recycling for all materials. That is why we support programs that cover many forms of packaging – like the curbside collection program –which are a more sustainable solution for solid waste recovery.
No. We don’t test on animals.
Water is absolutely essential to our business: it’s the main ingredient in all our drinks, it’s used in our manufacturing and it’s vital to grow many of the ingredients we use. Without it we simply wouldn’t have a business. There are four main ways we look after it:
- Protecting our local sources of water
- Reducing the amount of water used in our manufacturing through water efficiency initiatives
- Recycling water in our manufacturing processes and returning clean wastewater to the environment at a level that supports aquatic life.
- Replenishing and protecting water sources in areas of water risk by working with local partners and charities like WWF
We’re always striving to do better every year and set ourselves stretching targets. In 2013 we used 1.26 litres of water for every one litre of drink produced in Great Britain. But we want to be a leader in water efficiency, with a target of 1.2 litres of water for every litre of product we make – that would make us the most efficient soft drinks manufacturer in the world.
Currently, PlantBottle™ packaging in Great Britain is made using up to 22.5 per cent plant-based PET plastic, up to 25 per cent recycled PET plastic and 52.5 per cent 'regular' PET plastic.
PET plastic consists of two chemical parts: MEG (mono-ethylene glycol), which makes up 30 per cent of the PET by weight, and PTA (purified terephthalic acid), which makes up the other 70 per cent.
At the moment, we can make only the MEG part with plant-based material in a commercially viable way. While we have demonstrated the technology required to source the remaining 70% from plant material in a lab, we are still working with research partners to be able to do it in the greenest way possible on the sort of scale we’d need. We also are looking at other kinds of plant materials, such as wood chips, fruit peel and wheat stalks for future generations of PlantBottle™ packaging. Our goal by 2020 is to make all our plastic bottles from a combination of plant-based materials and recycled plastic.
No, we don't use any genetically modified ingredients in our drinks.