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Coca-Cola to launch its first alcoholic drink in Japan

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 08 March, 2018, 5:02am
UPDATED : Thursday, 08 March, 2018, 6:15am

Coca-Cola plans to launch its first ever alcoholic drink in Japan, in a surprising departure for a US company identified with cola and other non-alcoholic beverages.

While Coca-Cola dabbled in the wine business in the 1970s, the Japanese experiment is “unique” in the company’s 125-year history, said Coca-Cola Japan president Jorge Garduno.

The new offering will be in Japan’s growing “Chu-Hi” category of beverages, Garduno said in a recent interview posted to the company’s website.

“This is a canned drink that includes alcohol; traditionally, it is made with a distilled drink called shochu and sparkling water, plus some flavouring,” he said.

Chu-Hi drinks come in a range of flavours such as grape, strawberry, kiwi and white peach and sometimes replace shochu with vodka.

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Coca-Cola looks at marijuana ingredient cannabidiol in 'wellness beverages'
The soft drink producer is ‘closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD [cannabidiol] as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world’

Agence France-Presse
PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 18 September, 2018, 4:32am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 18 September, 2018, 7:08am

Coca-Cola is studying the use of a key ingredient in marijuana in “wellness beverages”, as a growing number of mainstream companies develop cannabis-infused drinks, the company announced on Monday.

“We have no interest in marijuana or cannabis,” Coca-Cola said in a statement. But the iconic soft drink producer said it is “closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD [cannabidiol] as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world”.

Cannabidiol is a chemical in marijuana that does not have the intoxicating effects of THC, the major active ingredient that causes the “high”. It has been used to treat epilepsy and other maladies.

“The space is evolving quickly,” Coca-Cola said. “No decisions have been made at this time.”

Coca-Cola’s statement comes amid reports the company has held talks with Canada’s Aurora Cannabis to develop beverages. Some of Coca-Cola’s trademark cola products have struggled to grow sales in recent years due to health concerns.

Canada is set to legalise cannabis on October 17 after both houses of Parliament voted to make the drug available for recreational use.

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Coca-Cola will cut 2,200 jobs worldwide as part of restructuring plan
* Coca-Cola will cut about 2,200 jobs as part of its workforce restructuring plan.
* The beverage giant accelerated its reorganization in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
* In total, Coke expects to spend $350 million to $550 million on severance costs.

By Amelia Lucas
PUBLISHED THU, DEC 17 2020 2:43 PM EST | UPDATED THU, DEC 17 2020 6:01 PM EST

Coca-Cola will cut about 2,200 jobs in its global workforce as part of a broader restructuring plan that was accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic.

In the United States, Coke will use layoffs and buyouts to eliminate about 1,200 jobs, accounting for about 12% of the workforce in its home market. The news was first reported by The Wall Street Journal.

At the end of 2019, the Atlanta-based company had 86,200 global employees. But the pandemic battered its revenue and raised costs for the beverage giant. About half of its sales typically comes from consumers drinking its beverages away from home. In the third quarter, its net sales slid 9%.

Coke has responded to the crisis by expediting its plans to restructure its business and slim down its portfolio. It has stopped producing drinks such as Tab and its Odwalla brand that don’t sell well and don’t present much opportunity for growth. The company plans to build new operating units focused on the regional and local level that will work closely with five global marketing leadership teams, divided up by category.

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