“Healthy soda” may seem like an oxymoron, but good news, soda lovers: it sounds like we may be seriously getting some more body-friendly options. And no, we’re not talking about the pseudo-health of diet sodas that have zero calories but are chock full of nasty chemicals.
According to TIME, PepsiCo is introducing a brand new line of pop, which will be marketed as “craft soda,” to be made with natural flavors and no high fructose corn syrup. The line, which will be called “Stubborn Sodas” (pretty cool name, IMHO), will be sweetened with sugar, instead. . . and it will start out with some super interesting flavors: black cherry with tarragon, orange hibiscus, agave vanilla cream, and pineapple cream.
Why the sudden health push? Recently, according to the Associated Press, consumers have been opting for more natural drinks that feel more “wholesome”–and that certainly doesn’t include classic Pepsi or Diet Pepsi. In fact, according to the Nasdaq, the beverage industry has been in a “10-year slide.” When people increasingly reach for water or tea instead of a can of Pepsi, the company has got to start thinking of new options–and that’s exactly what Pepsi is doing with its new line.
Currently, according to PepsiCo representative Gina Anderson, Stubborn Soda is still in “incubation.” There are no restaurants that will currently be serving it. “It’s very new, they’re still learning from it and reaching out,” Anderson told the AP.
PepsiCo isn’t the only soda company to experiment with healthier options; for example, Coca-Cola released Coke Life, which is sweetened with sugar and stevia, in the US last year.
Stubborn Soda is a follow-up to Caleb’s Kola (made from the kola nut) and Mountain Dew Dewshine, according to PepsiCo. Both of these sodas are being marketed as “craft sodas” and are being sold in glass bottles.
We’re naturally a little bit hesitant about this move; after all, original diet sodas were also marketed as healthy when they first came out, and companies will do anything to get consumers to buy their product and stay “trendy.” In terms of health, nothing can truly be better than good old-fashioned water. However, we seriously hope that this “healthy soda” is at least a sort-of thing, because orange hibiscus soda sounds totally on point.