kottke.org posts about Pepsi
Speaking of the New Yorker, there are three articles from the current issue you folks might be interested in (subscriber-only): Malcolm Gladwell on Apple borrowing ideas from Xerox Parc, John Seabrook on Pepsi's mission to make their offerings healthier, and Anthony Lane visits Pixar to see how the magic is made.
ScienceBlogs has added a blog about "innovations in science, nutrition and health policy" sponsored by Pepsi to their roster. Posters to the blog will include Pepsi research staff. Some of the other bloggers on ScienceBlogs are not happy.
However, that said, I am completely mystified by ScienceBlogs' latest development: adding the PepsiCo "nutrition" Blog. How does ScienceBlogs expect to maintain their (OUR) credibility as a science news source (we are picked up by Google news searches afterall) when they are providing paid-for content under the guise of news? Further, I cannot imagine what sorts of credible nutrition research PepsiCo is doing that they can or will actually talk about publicly, nor can I possibly imagine any "food" corporation actually caring about promoting public health. PepsiCo is a corporation, not a research institute, fer crissakes!
It's coming back around the holiday time.
Due to all the Throwback tweets, Facebook fan pages, videos, blog posts, pics & pleas, Pepsi Throwback is coming back!! Starting December 28th Pepsi and Mountain Dew Throwback will be available again for 8 weeks with the same formula and natural sugar, but this time with an even more rad vintage look!
An even more rad vintage look, you say? Rad!
You know that image that's been going around that shows several revisions to the Pepsi logo while the Coca-Cola logo is the same as it's been since 1885? It tells a compelling story...Pepsi shifting its brand every few years in an attempt to catch up to steady market leader Coca-Cola. But of course it's bullshit...Armin Vit constructs a more accurate brand timeline that shows many Coca-Cola logos over the years.
Ok, wait, stop the internet for a second. Last month, reports popped up on the web that Pepsi Throwback would be released in the US with real cane sugar in place of the hated HFCS. Now comes a report of a Pepsi Natural product also hitting the shelves in select cities...with sugar and in a glass bottle. Glass bottle! Here's a review:
While the regular version had a biting, acidic feel, the natural felt smoother and more mellow. The regular mouthfeel was inferior, being somewhat astringent. There was a grittiness on my tounge and teeth with the regular version that seemed absent with the other. Overall, the taste profile was very similar. I think that the natural version had hints of cognac, but even in the non-blind test the two drinks were difficult to distinguish. Later, a couple of my friends also used the adjective "smoother" when describing Pepsi Natural versus regular Pepsi.
It's like Pepsi Island has time-shifted back to 1974 and I couldn't be happier.
This is absolutely HUGE news. Wait, let's do this properly:
PEPSI WITH REAL SUGAR COMING TO USA!!!
If they were selling it in a glass bottle, I would have used 96 pt. type. But no matter...according to BevReview.com, Pepsi is introducing Pepsi Throwback (and Mountain Dew Throwback) in the United States around mid-April and instead of using high-fructose corn syrup, it will be sweetened with real cane sugar.
This is a big deal since mainstream soft drinks in the United States are sweetened with High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). Typically, the only way to get soda from the "big guys" with real sugar is to import it (i.e., Mexican Coke) or wait till Passover (Kosher Coke, Kosher Pepsi).
I know why Pepsi and Coke don't want to permanently introduce sugared versions of their products -- it would take away from their main products' market share and it would mean admitting that the HFCS versions are inferior -- but I think they would do really well in the marketplace. I don't know how well the boutique sodas that use cane sugar (e.g. Jones, Whole Foods, etc.) are selling, but based on their availability in many more places than just a few years ago, I'd say they're doing pretty well.
Anyway, let the stockpiling begin! (via serious eats)
Update: It is true that outdated sugar import quotas would make the production of sugared Coke and Pepsi more expensive but some drinkers would gladly pay a little extra for a Pepsi or Coke Premium product made with "natural" ingredients. (thx, peter & jason)
What do I think about the new Pepsi logo? Eh. Companies spend way too much time, effort, and money building up feelings about logos -- like decades and billions of dollars -- and then they just go and change it all. Of course the new logo and colors are similar to the old ones and it's variations on a theme but the new designs feel like someone's idea of what packaging is going to look like 10 years from now, an approach that never seems to work out well (see Back to the Future II). Coca-Cola had such success refreshing their brand with a simple take on their classic look and logo, why can't Pepsi do the same with this classic look?
Pepsi's market cap surpassed Coca-Cola's last week for the first time ever. The secret to their success? Diversifying into other snacks (Frito-Lay) and beverages (Tropicana and Gatorade).
Quick note to say that we've arrived in Bangkok, which I think is going to be more our speed somehow. Not that Hong Kong wasn't nice, but something about here feels better. We had a really chatty taxi driver on the way in (wish I'd gotten a photo or recorded some of the conversation, but I was too busy trying to keep up with his wall of words)...we learned a bit of the Thai language, that Pepsi is more popular than Coke here, and not to trust doormen. "Never go eat seafood where the doorman tell you to go eat seafood. Is too expensive. He get a commission. Go Chinatown, find your own." And then when we drove up to the hotel, he spotted the doorman and his eyes narrowed..."there he is, the doorman," and gave us a look of warning.
After checking in and showering, we met up with my dad, who took us for a typical Thai meal in a small, unassuming restaurant. Green mango salad, pork with spring vegetables, and a coconut milk soup with shrimp and mushrooms (it came in what looked like a bundt cake pan, with a small flame in the middle to keep the soup warm). Then we walked around a bit, orienting ourselves to the city. All the street food looked super good, and lots of bargains to be had at the night market (including about 15 different kinds of "pussy" listed on a card I had shoved in front of me on Patpong street). More to follow.
I'm in luck because it would take more than 260 cans of Pepsi to ingest enough caffeine to kill me. How much of your favorite beverage can you drink before suffering death by caffeine?