Top Five Best-Selling Soft Drinks

1. Coca Cola

The quintessential fizzy drink, Coca Cola is the top-selling and best-known beverage in the world. Coca Cola was first introduced in 1886 by pharmacist John Pemberton. That’s right, Coca Cola was actually intended as a patent medicine to substitute for morphine, but so popular was its unique taste that it was re-branded as a soft drink. Now Coca Cola is the second most widely understood term in the world, after “OK”.

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2. Pepsi

The other big name in the soft drinks world, Pepsi has had a long-standing rivalry with Coke. Again, it was originally designed as a health drink by inventor Caleb Bradham until it became a competitor in the soft drinks arms race of the early 20th century. Trumping Coca Cola has always been a difficult task, however. According to Nasdaq, Coke controls 42% of the total soft drinks market, compared with Pepsi’s 30%.

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3. Dr Pepper

What is it with pharmacists and soft drinks? This one has the honour of being the very first on the market, concocted by Charles Alderton in his drugstore circa 1885. Today Dr Pepper is – rather ironically – the unhealthiest of fizzy drinks, with more caffeine and additives than Coca Cola and Pepsi. According to Statista, Dr Pepper Snapple’s market share in the US is 17.1%.

  1. Sprite

    Sprite is something of a novice to the soft drinks market, as it has only been around since the 1960s. However, this is not to say it doesn’t deserve a place at the big table. Originating in Germany as Fanta Klare Zitrone (Clear Lemon Fanta), the Coca Cola Company introduced it to the US to compete with the popular 7 Up. It is now available in 190 countries.

    5. Irn Bru

    From its humble beginnings as a Scottish-only beverage to its current global success, this peculiar orange drink never fails to intrigue. Launched by A.G. Barr in 1901, Irn Bru has gained a reputation thanks to its “secret recipe” and controversial marketing campaigns. As well as being available in the UK, Irn Bru is distributed throughout Europe, the USA, the Middle and Far East and Australia – particularly where there are significant Scottish communities.

Author: Richard Brown

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