Coke Dealers


I had always assumed the nationwide market for Mexican Coca-Cola was, as it is here in the city of Saint Francis, strictly a sub rosa, back-room-of-the-bodega-or-taqueria phenomenon. But now reader Russ A. Dewey sends in this Fort Worth Star-Telegram article (reprinted in the great trade pub Beverage World) indicating the light-black market for the original, glass-bottled, cane-sugar-based beauty is much more mainstream than I thought:

Kroger supermarkets in Houston, Central Market in Fort Worth and Safeway stores in Denver offer the imported cola, which they receive from a national wholesaler, Gourmet Award Foods. Gourmet is a unit of Koninklijke Wessanen, a large Dutch-based dairy and cereal maker with annual revenues of $3 billion.

My question: Why haven't the wizards of the Peachtree State made any effort to cash in on decades of interest in real-sugar Coke? You'd think the relentless upscaling of American tastes would make Coca-Cola PremiumĀ® a slam-dunk.

(By the way, though I am a fan of neither newfangled Coke flavor experiments nor vanilla, I had some Vanilla Coke recently, and it was aces. I recommend it.)