The company first debuted the new recipe in Great Britain in June 2016. It launched in France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Ireland later that year, and it is expected to expand into South Africa later this year.
The product is known as Coca-Cola Zero Sugar in some markets, depending on labeling requirements, according to a press release. As part of the change, Coca-Cola scrapped Coke Zero’s packaging and replaced it with a new one that will feature the company’s red disk icon and display zero sugar more prominently.
The new design reflects the company’s broader “One Brand” marketing strategy, which aims to create a more cohesive brand while giving each flavor its own identity.
Despite the changes overseas, Coke Zero is here to stay in the U.S. — for now at least.
“In the United States, we continue to explore One Brand packaging options for the Coca-Cola Trademark portfolio,” a Coca-Cola representative said in an email. “We are listening and learning from the approach to Coca-Cola Zero Sugar in other markets and conducting our own research in the United States.”
Food and beverage companies have tried to keep up with consumers as they have become increasingly more health-conscious. Coca-Cola sales reached $41.9 billion in 2016, down 10 percent since they reached $46.5 billion in 2011, according to SEC filings.
Coke Zero debuted in 2005 as a sugar-free and calorie-free version of traditional Coca-Cola. It used the same artificial sweetener as Diet Coke, though it was marketed to match the classic flavor instead of a lighter one.
In a press release, Coca-Cola said the new recipe tastes closer to the real thing than Coke Zero does.
“Coca-Cola Zero is already a great tasting drink, but we think with this new recipe,” the release says, “we’ve been able to get even closer to the taste of Coca-Cola Classic/Original Taste.”