Six Soda Products That No Longer Exist

Top of glass soda bottle with white lid in close-up sepia photograph

Remember “New Coke”? If you don’t, you’re not alone simply because it happened before any of today’s young people were born. Still, it lingers in the institutional memory of marketers the world over as a once-in-a-generation debacle no one is eager to repeat. Even those of us who make Sparkling CBD Soda are aware of it and determined to learn from it.

We'll get into New Coke in more detail in a minute. But for now, we're using it as a set up for the premise of this article, which is about sodas that have come and gone, never again to see the fluorescent light of the convenience store shelf. Enjoy.

While newcomers like Sparkling CBD Soda occasionally appear and manage to carve out a niche in the soft drink market, that's more the exception than the rule. Usually what happens is that, in an effort to shake things up, established companies introduce revamped versions of classics they hope will catch on. In most cases, they crash and burn. Such was the fate of the following:

#1: New Coke

During the mid-1980s, Coke began to lose market share to its sweeter rival Pepsi. In response, someone at Coca-Cola decided it was time to stop leading and start following, so they tweaked the recipe to make it sweeter and, in theory, more attractive to younger consumers. Only problem was the average Coke drinker (of which there were hundreds of millions) liked Coke the way it was and revolted when their beloved beverage was replaced with a Pepsi taste-alike.

Coke sales plummeted so badly that within three months the old recipe was resurrected and slipped back onto store shelves as “Coke Classic” to great success. New Coke lingered beside Coke Classic for seven years as the company tried to recoup their R&D and marketing costs. In 1992 it was rebranded Coke II and was still offered in a limited number of markets before being retired for good in 2002.

#2: Sprite Remix

In 2003 in an effort to energize the Sprite brand Sprite Remix was launched to nearly universal indifference. Some Sprite lovers picked it up by mistake and were appalled. Others simply ignored it all together. As a result, less than two years after being introduced the berry-flavored Sprite Remix was quietly pulled from the market.

Not content to try and fail once the folks at Sprite decided to try and fail again, so in 2016 they reintroduced Sprite Remix but changed its name to Sprite Tropical Mix. This time, however, they decided on a limited launch, and it’s a good thing they did because it tanked once again.

#3: Life Savers Soda

In the 1980s the people behind the wildly popular Life Savers candy decided that what the world needed was a Life Savers Soda, and so did it come to pass. Literally. It came, it bombed and it passed. But why? You’d think fans of the candy would jump at the chance to enjoy a liquid version of the same.

Unfortunately, it wasn't as easy as all that. The problems with Life Saver Soda turned out to be many and included the unappealing color and a funky taste. Seems it wasn't like drinking Life Savers after all. It was way more like drinking soda that wasn't very good.

#4: Crystal Pepsi

Crystal Pepsi was launched in 1992 and was supposed to be a "New Age" soft drink with less sugar, no artificial coloring, fewer calories and natural flavors. The company's goal was to sell $1 billion worth of Crystal Pepsi in its first year. Needless to say, they came up a bit short. About $600 million short.

New Agers it turns out weren’t interested in soft drinks and those content to live in the Current Age didn’t buy the whole “healthier than thou” pitch. All they saw was clear soda, and soda isn’t supposed to be clear. Is it? A year after its launch Crystal Pepsi was discontinued.

#5: Orbitz

No one is going to confuse our Sparkling CBD soda with Orbitz soda. Orbitz was made by the same company that produced Clearly Canadian spring water. It was a non-carbonated beverage that attempted to carve out a niche with ‘edgier’ youths who wanted an alternative to mainstream soft drinks.

Unfortunately, Orbitz included small edible balls of gelatin suspended in the liquid that made bottles of the drink look like lava lamps and had consumers - edgy and otherwise - recoiling. Turns out people didn’t want balls of goo slipping into their mouths when they were trying to quench their thirst. Imagine that! Orbitz crashed out of orbit a year after being introduced.

#6: Hubba Bubba Soda

In 1988 the Hubba Bubba Bubble Gum company decided to try and see if their flagship bubble gum brand would work as a soft drink. The notion seems to have been that if their cola flavored bubble gum sold well (and it did) maybe a bubble gum flavored cola would sell equally well.

It didn’t. People avoided it like the plague and within just a couple of years of launch it was relegated to the status of collector’s item.

Try Our Delicious Sparkling CBD Drinks!

There’s no need to scour the soft drink section of the store for bad ideas when you can enjoy the clean, refreshing taste of our Sparkling CBD beverages. No tricks, gimmicks or gelatin balls. Just delicious effervescent Sparkling CBD drinks created with care.