Diet Pepsi's new recipe: Will fans taste the difference?

The second-place soda giant is in the midst of a brand overhaul

Diet Pepsi
(Image credit: AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

We all know Coke is better than Pepsi. I mean really, Pepsi is what you drink when the waitress says, "Sorry, we only have Pepsi." Of course, Pepsi, which has lost market share to Coke in recent years, seems to know this, and is in the midst of a rebranding campaign to convince consumers to give them another chance. The first, admittedly brilliant step: Pay Beyonce a lot of money to shill the product. The second, more questionable step: Change the recipe of Diet Pepsi.

According to The Associated Press, the company has quietly added a new artificial sweetener — acesful potassium — to "stabilize the taste of the drink." It is the first time the recipe has been changed since the 1980s, when Diet Pepsi's principal sweetener, aspartme, was introduced to replace saccharine. Pepsi officials say the addition of acesful potassium won't alter the flavor of Diet Pepsi too much. Rather, it should make the taste of Diet Pepsi "come across in high definition," according to Angelique Krembs, Pepsi's vice president in marketing.

In addition to Diet Pepsi's new synesthetic properties, the company will launch an ad blitz with the tag line, "Love Every Sip," and introduce new "special edition silver cans featuring the blue-and-red Pepsi logo in a heart shape," says the AP. However, even Coke, which has remained the top brand in the world for 13 years, has run into trouble changing the design of its cans. In 2011, the company pulled its silver, holiday-themed cans because customers confused them for Diet Cokes. "I drank one and wondered why it tasted so good," Gail O'Donnell, a Coke fan, told the New York Daily News.

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