I don’t drink a lot of soda, but I have been to the World of Coca-Cola in Atlanta, Georgia where they give visitors a tour of the factory and treat them to unlimited Coca-Cola products at the end. But throughout this tour, there is one secret that they don’t reveal: the recipe of the world’s most popular drink.
This American Life, a public radio program hosted by Ira Glass, made the announcement last Friday where they discovered a photograph in 1979 showing a copy of the secret recipe from a notebook allegedly belonging to a friend of Coca-Cola’s creator. The secret ingredient, mysteriously named Merchandise 7x, is shown to be essential to the recipe.
This American Life is used to seeing high traffic from hosting the popular podcast on the web, but their servers couldn’t take the rapid increase of visitors since the Coke story broke. Various news outlets have picked up the story, including Al Jazeera.
A lot of changes have been made since the drink was invented in 1886: the roughly 8 milligram dose of cocaine has been removed, the amount of caffeine has been reduced, and the types of sweeteners and acids used have been replaced.
Reports say that if the recipe is authentic, it’s possible that the creator was in the intermediate stages of perfecting the drink and that the final recipe is still safely hidden.