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Silent Goodbye: Pepsi Pulls the Plug on a Much-Loved Beverage, Coca-Cola Steps into the Void

In the ever-evolving landscape of the beverage industry, the discontinuation of beloved sodas can stir a fervent reaction among loyal fans. 

The demise of Coca-Cola’s Tab diet soda in 2020 is a testament to the enduring attachment consumers can have to a product, sparking protests and online campaigns to reverse the decision. 

The SaveTaBSoda Committee’s Crusade

However, it’s not just Coca-Cola facing the challenge of discontinuation; PepsiCo’s recent decision to bid farewell to Sierra Mist had broader consequences, silently extinguishing a seasonal favorite, Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash.

When Coca-Cola announced the end of its original diet cola, Tab, in 2020 after 57 years, a dedicated group of Tab enthusiasts emerged as the SaveTaBSoda Committee. 

Their mission is explicitly stated on their website: “We’re Tab drinkers with a purpose. We’re the SaveTaBSoda Comm

ittee, and we’re working hard to convince Coca-Cola to reverse its decision to eliminate Tab.” 

The group even staged a protest at Coca-Cola’s Atlanta headquarters, showcasing the depth of devotion to this iconic soda.

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PepsiCo’s Stealthy Discontinuation

In the ever-evolving landscape of the beverage industry, the discontinuation of beloved sodas can stir a fervent reaction among loyal fans.

In contrast, PepsiCo’s decision to discontinue Sierra Mist this year went relatively unnoticed, overshadowed by the introduction of Starry, a new lemon-lime soda. The company cited a growing demand for lemon-lime flavors and aimed to challenge the market dominance of Coca-Cola’s Sprite. 

While the introduction of Starry marked the end of Sierra Mist, PepsiCo failed to highlight the collateral damage: the demise of Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash, a seasonal favorite that added a festive touch during the winter holidays.

Unlike the coffee market, where seasonal limited-time-offer (LTO) flavors are common, the soda industry typically lacks such targeted releases. Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash, however, was an exception, making an annual appearance during the winter holiday season.

 Unfortunately, with the discontinuation of Sierra Mist, the cranberry-infused variant also vanished in 2023, leaving consumers without their familiar winter treat.

Amidst the fallout, Coca-Cola emerges as the bearer of good news for fans missing Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash. The company offers an alternative with Sprite Winter Spiced Cranberry, a seasonal soda that combines the classic lemon-lime taste with a hint of tangy cranberry and spices. 

Coca-Cola’s ingenuity in creating new flavor combinations stands as a testament to the company’s commitment to meeting consumer preferences, even when faced with the challenge of discontinued favorites.

The narratives of Tab, Sierra Mist, and Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash highlight the emotional attachment consumers form with their favorite sodas. The SaveTaBSoda Committee’s persistence reflects the power of consumer advocacy, urging companies to reconsider their decisions. 

Meanwhile, the untold story of Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash serves as a reminder of the unintended casualties when a brand bids farewell. As the beverage industry continues to evolve, the legacy of discontinued favorites lingers, leaving a trail of devoted fans seeking solace in alternative flavors and new combinations.

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