By: Jay Moye, Editor-in-Chief, Coca-Cola Journey
Coca-Cola’s journey to becoming a total beverage company includes supporting the World Health Organization (WHO)’s recommendation that people limit added sugars to 10 percent of their daily caloric intake. And, according to President and CEO James Quincey, the company sees “exponential” growth opportunity within these recommendations.
“For us to drive sustainable, profitable growth of our brands, we also need to encourage and enable our consumers to control added sugar consumption,” Quincey said. “We are making a very conscious effort to not just expand our portfolio, but to shape our portfolio in a very deliberate way.”
The company is reducing the amount of sugar in its sparkling soft drinks by reformulating existing beverages while preserving the taste consumers love, and by rolling out Coca-Cola Zero Sugar and other low-/no-sugar brands globally. Expanding availability of smaller packages like mini cans and investing in sugar alternatives are key priorities, as well. “People still love the sparkling category, and it’s still growing in terms of revenue,” Quincey said. “But we know we need to do things differently to help people moderate their intake of added sugar.”
In 2016, The Coca-Cola Company reduced sugar in more than 200 drinks globally. And this year, the company will reduce sugar in more than 500 drinks around the world – adding to its more than 1,100 existing low- or no-sugar drinks.
Smaller packs of Coca-Cola and other sparkling brands – which help consumers control their intake of added sugar – are now sold in 140 countries around the world. Mini cans and other smaller packages account for 15 percent of the company’s sparkling beverage transactions in North America.
'People’s tastes and preferences are changing, and we’re changing, too. We’re listening
carefully and working to ensure that consumers are firmly at the center of our business so we
can continue to grow responsibly.No matter what, we are fully committed to helping
consumers better control the amount of sugar they get from our drinks without giving up the
great tastes they know and love.'
The company is also boosting the visibility of its low and no-sugar drinks, and continues to include clear, easy-to-find nutrition information on packaging to help shoppers make informed choices.
And Coke’s efforts extend beyond the sparkling category. The company continues to bring other drinks like organic tea, coconut water, grab-and-go coffee, juices, and purified water to more people in more places.
“People’s tastes and preferences are changing, and we’re changing, too,” Quincey said. “We’re listening carefully and working to ensure that consumers are firmly at the center of our business so we can continue to grow responsibly. No matter what, we are fully committed to helping consumers better control the amount of sugar they get from our drinks without giving up the great tastes they know and love."
The average person around the world consumes eight 8-oz. drinks every day of their life, and Coke currently accounts for only fraction of those globally.
“We can legitimately aspire – with one portfolio – to not only satisfy, engage and deliver great taste for a whole day’s worth of drinks but do so within a healthy, balanced diet,” Quincey said. “This is a path that’s possible to a larger scale for this company.”