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PepsiCo Reverses Course On Aspartame Sweetener As Diet Pepsi Sales Continue To Slide

June 27, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
The artificially-sweetened soda market is in the doldrums, but PepsiCo’s aspartame blunder didn’t help matters. So, to reverse steadily declining Diet Pepsi sales the company is bringing back the aspartame-sweetened version it torpedoed nearly a year ago in favor of a sucralose-sweetened version. The aspartame product will hit store shelves in September, and will be sold alongside its sucralose sister. PepsiCo says it is reacting to loud protests from the diet soda’s die-hard fans who claimed to hate the taste of sucralose. But the reformulation last August worsened Diet Pepsi’s soda market share: from 4.5 percent to 4.1 percent as sales fell 10.6 percent in 1Q 2016. Diet Coke, with a 7.4 percent soda market share, saw sales slip 5.7 percent in the same period.
Mike Esterl, "PepsiCo to Reintroduce Aspartame-Sweetened Diet Pepsi", The Wall Street Journal, June 27, 2016, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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