After getting the world's most prominent social media platforms and snagging Twitter for $44 billion in a bizarre hostile takeover on Monday, billionaire Tesla founder Elon Musk has announced to take over of another corporate giant, Coca Cola. In yet another eccentric tweet, newfound Twitter owner Musk today said that he planned to buy Coca-Cola next "to put the cocaine back in".
Next I’m buying Coca-Cola to put the cocaine back in— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 28, 2022
His tweet shows the veteran beverage company's colourful history with cocaine. Coca Cola's eponymous trademark soft drink is named for its two primary ingredients: coca leaves and kola nuts. While kola nuts are a source of caffeine, coca leaves are the base from which the psychoactive drug cocaine is extracted.
In May 1886, Coca-Cola was invented by Doctor John Pemberton. He was a pharmacist from Atlanta, Georgia. According to the statement of the Coca-Cola Company, Pemberton developed the syrup for the famed beverage, which was sampled at the local Jacob's Pharmacy and deemed to be "excellent." The syrup was amalgamated with carbonated water to create a new "Delicious and Refreshing" drink. Pemberton concocted the famed Coca-Cola formula in a three-legged brass kettle in his backyard.
Coca Cola bottle history 1899, 1900, 1915, 1916, 1957 amp 1986 pic.twitter.com/TmA5zmBQ6w— Rare History Photos (@RareHisPhotos) April 23, 2022
The name of Coca-Cola was a suggestion given by Pemberton's bookkeeper Frank Robinson. As the recipe for the syrup called for coca leaf extract and caffeine from the kola nut, the name Coca Kola was easy to come up with. Kola became cola, and the brand name was born. Robinson can also be credited with creating the first scripted "Coca-Cola" using the flowing letters that serve as the famous logo of today.
In 1887, another Atlanta pharmacist and businessman, Asa Candler, bought the formula for Coca-Cola from Pemberton for $2,300. Unfortunately, Pemberton died just a few years later. By the late 1890s, Coca-Cola was one of America's most popular fountain drinks, largely due to Candler's aggressive marketing of the product. With Candler now at the helm, the Coca-Cola Company increased syrup sales by over 4,000 percent between 1890 and 1900.
While the Coca-Cola Company denies this claim, some historical evidence shows that it is likely that, until 1905, the soft drink, which was marketed as a tonic, contained extracts of cocaine as well as the caffeine-rich kola nut.
While cocaine wasn't considered illegal until 1914, according to Live Science, Candler began removing cocaine from the recipe in the early 1900s. Some traces of cocaine may have been present in the famous beverage until 1929 when scientists were able to perfect the removal of all psychoactive elements from the coca-leaf extract.
Advertising was an important factor in the successful sales of Coca-Cola, and by the turn of the century, the drink was sold across the United States and Canada. Around the same time, the company began selling syrup to independent bottling companies licensed to sell the drink. Even today, the U.S. soft drink industry is organized on this principle.