Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Coke, Pepsi Finally Get It...Maybe

Well it's about time! The Coca-Cola Co. and PepsiCo Inc., two companies I have long complained about for using aspartame to sweeten their diet soft drinks, finally got on the Splenda bandwagon after using aspartame exclusively for years.

I was watching television last night and saw a commercial for Diet Coke and about fell out of my seat when I heard the quick promo at the end of the commercial that blared, "And look for new Diet Coke now sweetened with Splenda!" I couldn't believe it! In fact, it's funny because now I will have to rewrite part of my book where I ranted against the big soft drink companies for not realizing those of us who are livin' la vida low-carb want and need Splenda in our diet sodas. Oh well, that's a good thing I guess.

Of course, to keep their customers happy, Coke says it will not be changing the regular Diet Coke that is currently flavored with powdered paint thinner, or Aspartame (brand name of Nutrasweet). Have you noticed how every company who uses Splenda in their products proudly displays their symbol on their packaging, but you are seeing less and less of the Nutrasweet symbol? Me thinks there's a backlash against the latter because people are realizing how harmful it is to their health.

Diet Coke with Splenda will have a unique packaging with a yellow streak on it for consumers to distinguish it from the regular Diet Coke. As for Pepsi, they will add Splenda to their one calorie diet soda called Pepsi One. Regular Diet Pepsi, sweetened with aspartame, will not be offered with Splenda, though. Both of these products are expected to be widely available to consumers over the next month.

You know, I really hope Diet Coke with Splenda does well because maybe they'll branch off and put Splenda in my favorite flavors, including Diet Cherry Coke and the new Diet Coke with Lime, which I think is the most incredible-tasting diet soda on the market today. But I'm sure the demand will dictate whether they will begin putting Splenda in their other products or not.

The jury is still out on the taste of these new products for me. Plus they still have caffeine in them, which is also not very good for you while you are livin' la vida low-carb. I have gotten so used to and enjoy drinking Diet Rite (which also doesn't have any caffeine it it, by the way!) that changing brands may take some time. The taste will have to be a lot better than Diet Rite for me to switch.

(As a quick aside, though, what's up with Diet Rite changing from a 12-pack to a 15-pack recently. Besides the new packaging looking awkward and costing nearly a dollar more, it's just strange. Maybe they're trying to start a new trend in the soda industry. I buy a lot of Diet Rite anyway, but the packaging and pricing is just odd to me. If you have any thoughts on this, leave a comment below.)

Speaking of Diet Rite, have you registered to win a free year's supply at their web site. It takes less than a minute to enter and you could be well-stocked for the next 12 months on the best-tasting diet soft drink on the market today!

I'll probably buy Diet Coke with Splenda when it's on sale and at least once just to say I tried it. I'll let you know what I think in a future blog entry once it hits the shelves.

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