Coca-Cola GB invests £10m in next step of “sugar and calorie reduction” strategy as Coke Zero is replaced

Coca-Cola Great Britain (CCGB) today (April 19) announced what it called “the next step in [our]strategy to help people reduce their sugar intake” – a “new and improved” sugar-free Coca-Cola which will be in stores this summer. 

The new drink, Coca-Cola Zero Sugar, will replace Coke Zero, and is designed to “taste even more like the original Coca-Cola (Coca-Cola Classic), but without sugar”. Zero Sugar’s launch will be supported by a £10m marketing campaign designed to get more people to “choose no sugar”.

The new drink is backed by CCGB’s biggest marketing investment in a new product launch for a decade and will feature TV, out of home, digital advertising and experiential.  The multi-million pound marketing campaign will encourage consumers to try the new and improved Coca-Cola Zero Sugar by highlighting that it “tastes more like Coke and looks more like Coke” than the original Coke Zero.  This move is a deliberate attempt to change the mix of the company’s portfolio between sugar and no sugar drinks and is the latest action to result from the company’s £30m reformulation and new product development programme.

Coca-Cola Zero Sugar is the result of years of recipe development and innovation, says CCGB. As well as the improved taste, the new name – Coca-Cola Zero Sugar – and packaging will make it even clearer to consumers that the drink is sugar-free. This decision was informed by consumer research conducted last year which showed that five in ten people did not know Coca-Cola Zero contained no sugar.

In addition to the new recipe and taste, Coca-Cola Zero Sugar will have a new look in line with the company’s “One Brand” marketing strategy.  The new design incorporates the Coca-Cola red disc which has become a signature element of the brand, synonymous with great taste. By extending it to Coca-Cola Zero Sugar the new pack is designed to encourage people who love the taste of the 130-year-old original to give the zero sugar version a try.

Leendert den Hollander, general manager at Coca-Cola Enterprises, said:  “For years we have offered people a choice – every brand we sell has a great tasting no sugar version.  Since 2012 our commercial strategy has focused on accelerating the growth of our no sugar options. We know that millions of people love the taste of Coca-Cola and have been working to refine the recipe of Coca-Cola Zero to match the taste of the original, but without sugar. It’s the biggest investment we’ve made in a new product launch for a decade and will give people the great taste of Coca-Cola Classic but without the sugar.”

Today’s announcement is the latest in a series of actions taken by CCGB to promote moderation and choice and help people reduce their sugar and calorie intake,” the company said in a statement. “As a result of moves by manufacturers to change recipes, introduce smaller packs and invest more in marketing no sugar options, soft drinks is the only food and drink category from which the sugar purchased by British households is  decreasing – by 13.6% in the last five years.”

Coca-Cola Zero Sugar will be available across the ciountry from the end of June.


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