Coca-Cola's secret formula remains a mystery

The Fruitland plant has been making and shipping Coca-Cola products for years
Posted at 3:00 PM, Oct 12, 2023

FRUITLAND, Idaho — The Coca-Cola company's formula for its popular beverage is a closely guarded trade secret. If you think it's just a marketing ploy, think again. Swire Coca-Cola Plant Manager Ken Schappert, who grew up right across the plant in Fruitland, says it's the real thing (no pun intended).

Schappert has actually spent most of his adult life at the plant.
"We manufacture the product right here in Fruitland and serve most of Idaho and parts of Eastern Oregon. As a matter of fact, my favorite of all the products has to be Coke Zero." Schappert said.

I asked about the secret formula, and Ken jokingly said even if he knew it, which he claims he doesn't, he couldn't say.

We started the tour in the warehouse where there were thousands of empty cans ready to be filled. Then it was to the area where they actually mix the secret syrup that's shipped in the darkness of night from somewhere in Texas. The mixture goes into large vats. Then a lab technician pours a small sample and takes it back to the laboratory for testing. Kevin Jennings says he checks for 'Brix', a word he admits he had never heard of before he started working at the plant.

"I keep checking until the numbers add up and we have the right mixture," added Jennings.

'Brix' basically means you're measuring for sugar content. Once the lab technician gives it a thumbs up, it's time to get the Coca-Cola in those empty cans from the warehouse.

And at the end of the line, awaits a forklift and big empty trucks. As far as ever knowing the secret formula, I'm OK with that.