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20 Facts You May Not Have Known About Coca-Cola

It’s been one of America’s favorite drinks since 1886. But just how much do we know about the history of Coca-Cola? Check out these interesting facts:

Coca-Cola Syrup Keg

Coca-Cola syrup originally shipped in red kegs - creating the color association with the beverage.

  1. The syrup for Coca-Cola was originally shipped in bright red wooden kegs, beginning Coca-Cola’s association with the color red.
  2. The Coca-Cola logo was created by inventor John Pemberton’s partner and bookkeeper, Frank Robinson.
  3. In the first year, John Pemberton’s expenses for selling Coca-Cola amounted to $70. His profits were only $50.
  4. The first outdoor wall sign advertising Coca-Cola was painted in 1894 and can be seen today on the side of the Young Brothers Pharmacy in Cartersville, Georgia.
  5. The first countries outside the US to bottle Coca-Cola were Cuba and Panama.
  6. The first European country to bottle Coca-Cola was France, in 1919.
  7. As part of a marketing campaign by the Coca-Cola Company between 1932 and 1935, bottlers hired female employees to bring a free sample of Coke to houses and install a Starr X bottler opener. This helped increase consumption of the drink at home.
  8. During WWII, 64 Coca-Cola bottling plants were built near areas of combat in N. Africa, the Pacific and Europe.
  9. The green color of the Coca-Cola contour bottle is referred to as “Georgia Green”, since that was where Coke was invented.

    Young Brothers Pharmacy

    The first outdoor wall sign advertising Coca-Cola was painted in 1894 and can be seen today on the side of the Young Brothers Pharmacy in Cartersville, Georgia.

  10. Bottles of Coke sold outside the United States are generally clear.
  11. Coca-Cola passed the 1 billion a day mark in 1997.
  12. The formula for Coca-Cola (referred to as Merchandise 7X) is locked away in a bank vault and is known by only a few Coca-Cola employees.
  13. 87 days after Coca-Cola introduced their new formula in 1985, the original was back on the market (as Coca-Cola Classic) due to decreased market share and consumer outrage.
  14. The highest per capita consumption of Coca-Cola occurs in Mexico and Iceland.
  15. Coca-Cola is now sold in roughly 200 countries and their logo appears in more than 80 languages.
  16. The Coca-Cola trademark is recognized by 94% of the world’s population.
  17. The Coca-Cola Company produces 450 products worldwide.
  18. The new Coke was the first soft drink to be sent into space. It went up in specially designed space cans called the “Coca-Cola Space Can” on the Space Shuttle Challenger.
  19. The first soda fountain in space served Diet Coke on the Space Shuttle Discovery.
  20. The Coca-Cola Company makes only the syrup for the famous soft drink. The syrup is then sent to bottlers who create the finished product.

How many of these facts did you know? Chime in, and share your own tidbits about Coca-Cola.

Last updated: May 4, 2012
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About Ann

Ann is a web assistant and project manager with Retro Planet. After prior stints in the advertising and publishing worlds, she has found her place with the company. She is a serious anglophile and history buff, with a passion for anything from the past, especially retro inspired decor.

  • Pamela

    I remember the “new Coke” and how we all were up in arms in finding a new soft drink. The day we got the original formula in our convenience store, we bought as much as we could. It was probably a highly profitable week for the small-town stores. They couldn’t keep enough in stock!