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"Pepsi Throwback" with sugar instead of HFCS?


Has anyone tried this stuff? Where is it available? I can't tell whether they're using real cane sugar or some other kind of sugar. I stopped buying imported Mexican Pepsi because even they started using HFCS.

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  1. "Where is it available?" might be answered by one of the first couple sentences of the article when is says

    #1 "products coming soon" and

    #2 "In the middle of April, PBV [Pepsi Bottling Ventures] also will begin distributing Pepsi Throwback and Mountain Dew Throwback..."

    As for sugar versus HFCS, that's answered in the article when it says, "formulated with sugar."

    8 Replies
    1. re: HaagenDazs

      Considering it's a limited-time-only thing, and if it's any good, I'll probably end up stockpiling the stuff along with the kosher Coke.

      1. re: monkeyrotica

        The article is an AMAZING source of information so I'm not sure why you're asking these questions or mentioning the limited-time thing... the article mentions NOTHING of the sort. In fact it says:

        "No word on... how long this drink will be on the shelves."

        1. re: HaagenDazs

          Last year was the first year (I think) that Coke produced the kosher version with cane sugar. I was told by the Jewish worker in the kosher section that Coke & Pepsi were only making it for Passover. It's not likely to be a year round item.

          1. re: JohnE O

            Coke has been making the Kosher version for years. At least 5 or 6 years that I know of, maybe more.

            The "throwback" versions of these Pepsi products have nothing to do with Passover so while they may be available for a limited time (but who knows, as I mentioned above the article gives no indication on how long it will "be on the shelves.") the soda is not mentioned to have a seasonal cycle like the Kosher products do.

            I'd be very willing to bet that this could be around for a while. It's likely a test case to see how the public reacts to the product and if maybe, just maybe, a full scale switch to cane sugar is in order... though I doubt that will happen.

            While I'm a Coke fan I have to applaud Pepsi for doing this.

            1. re: HaagenDazs

              Coke makes it's "mexican" cola with cane sugar. I pick it up at the local spanish grocery. tastes a world of difference to me.

              it's in glass bottles to boot.

              1. re: RPMcMurphy

                I know. It's everywhere. I can get it at a lousy Kroger around the corner from me but it tends to be more expensive than usual. The Kosher versions are the same (or just about the same) price as the regular stuff.

                1. re: RPMcMurphy

                  The Pepsi and 7UP in the bodegas around here used to be made with cane, now the label clearly says HFCS.

                2. re: HaagenDazs

                  Pepsi makes a Kosher for Passover, too. AND it goes on sale afterwards, but I always forget to stock up. I can get Mexican Pepsi with real sugar and it's fabulous.

        2. as time is closer to PASSOVER there will be offerings "KOSHER for PASSOVER" ..ALL
          grain products are removed,which includes many preservatives,HFCS etc Then back in with cane sugar.

          2 Replies
          1. re: lcool

            Canadian Passover Coke does NOT contain cane sugar. The issue is not fructose, it is the corn. The kosher for Passover version contains glucose-fructose which, to your body, and in the absence of a corn allergy, is much the same as HFCS. I suggest reading labels very carefully.

            I can taste strong differences in blindfolded tastings among, say, Coke or Pepsi products bottled in different places. I can unerringly distinguish "regular" Coke and Pepsi from each other. However, I have never been able to state conclusively that using sugar vs HFCS makes the product taste better (or worse). Obviously, YMMV.

            1. re: embee

              Here in the greater DC area (US) as recently as 2008 cane sugar was the listed ingredient.Considering how many plants the various beverage companies have I would expect great variation of formula,all in the name of cheap.As I am allergic to corn by-products in general I READ THE INGREDIENT FINE PRINT on all products.
              Almost NO "pre" or convenience foods cross the portal.It just isn't worth my time to read the list of "?".Much easier to to cook from scratch and be done with it.

          2. Thank you for posting about this! I avoid the HFCS too, and I'd love to try this.

            1. With the price of corn going up worldwide, there may not be as big a cost difference between sugar and HFCS as there has been.

              Beverage companies are always looking for new products to lure in (or back) consumers. New flavors, more caffeine, less caffeine, different sweeteners, different formulas (Diet Coke AND Coke Zero), so if they can make a big marketing deal out of using sugar, and maybe charge a couple of cents more, then it's well worth it to them.

              1. I just saw this on Serious Eats, so apparently it is a limited edition, only available through June 13th:

                Pepsi to Use Real Sugar in 'Pepsi Throwback' in April
                Starting April 20, Pepsi will sell cans of Pepsi Throwback and Mountain Dew Throwback, which will be made with real sugar instead of HFCS. According to an email exchange today with Pepsi-Cola rep Nicole Bradley (inspired by Serious Eaters' questions): "Both products will be offered at the same price as regular Pepsi and regular Mountain Dew." The drinks will only be available until June 13.

                1. All of the big beverage companies are gearing up to start offering products with stevia as the sweetner. Apparently it is already used for that purpose in Japan, including Coca Cola. Both Coke and Pepsi have recently been granted GRAS status by FDA for their respective versions. Could this "throwback" deal be a little stealthy market research project to see how the market will accept it? It would help explain how the stuff could be "zero calories."


                  7 Replies
                  1. re: johnb

                    I'm a little confused as to how a move towards stevia is related to introduction of a drink with traditional sugar (that's certainly not being marketed as having "zero calories"!).

                    1. re: Ruth Lafler

                      It doesn't!

                      I assume this is either pure marketing research or else they got a phenomenal deal on some sugar. If it sells bigtime, they might be heading toward the shtick long used by Disney and Mickey D's: it's coming back for a short visit, so load up on it while you can before it goes back to the vault.

                      The item about stevia at least shows Coke has some understanding about it. I would imagine that stevia sweetened Sprite would be fine. I would think that the very strong taste of stevia would be revolting in Coke.

                      1. re: embee

                        I grew some stevia in my garden a few years back out of curiosity, tried it in my morning tea when I was out of sugar one day...horrid.

                        1. re: chilihead

                          From what I've read, that would be the expected reaction to just using the leaves. It needs to be somewhat refined to use. Putting the leaf in your tea appears to a bit like dropping in a chunk of sugar cane--won't work.

                      2. re: Ruth Lafler

                        Maybe the association is that people want to avoid some of the ingredients that have been widely used in mass-produced beverages in recent years. Have the soda with regular cane sugar; avoid HFCS. Have the diet soda with stevia; avoid aspartame or saccharine. Kwim?

                        1. re: Ruth Lafler

                          I mentioned the stevia idea because I parsed through some of the links and thought I found something directly from the company that didn't specifically say it was sugar, suggesting a "natural sweetner" not HFCS. So I was musing that maybe it is stevia. But I can't find that again, so maybe it was just my mistake. However, here is another link indicating that stevia sweetened drinks are coming


                        2. re: johnb

                          I don't see how introducing a throwback product with sugar has anything to do with stevia. I would absolutely not drink a product with stevia.

                        3. Now if they would only bring back the long neck, 12 ounce, glass bottle...