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Coca-Cola debuts Orange Vanilla, its first new flavor in more than a decade

Coca-Cola

Say hello to Orange Vanilla Coke and Orange Vanilla Coke Zero Sugar. | Coca-Cola

For the first time in over a decade, Coca-Cola is unveiling a new flavor.

Say hello to Orange Vanilla Coke and Orange Vanilla Coke Zero Sugar.

The pair of new products go on sale Feb. 25 across the country and will be available in 12-ounce cans and 20-ounce plastic bottles, the Atlanta-based soda giant said Friday. The new flavor also will be sold at Wendy’s restaurants in fountain dispensers through the end of the NCAA March Madness basketball tournament, at which point it’ll be available in all Coca-Cola soda dispensers.

“We wanted to bring back positive memories of carefree summer days,” Coca-Cola brand director Kate Carpenter said on the company’s blog. “That’s why we leaned into the orange-vanilla flavor combination – which is reminiscent of the creamy orange popsicles we grew up loving, but in a classically Coke way.”

Coca-Cola tested three other flavors – raspberry, lemon and ginger – but focus groups liked the orange and vanilla combo much more, according to the company. Last summer, Coke launched Orange No Sugar in Australia and Orange Vanilla in Canada.

The Orange Vanilla announcement comes at a time when Big Soda contends with criticism over American’s unhealthy eating habits and with municipalities around the country passing so-called soda taxes. Plus, Americans now buy more bottled water than carbonated beverages, data from the research and consulting company Beverage Marketing found.

Vanilla Coke and Vanilla Coke Zero were introduced in 2007, though Vanilla Coke first debuted in 2002 and then went off the market, according to Coca-Cola. Cherry Coke Zero also was launched in 2007; Cherry Coke has been around since 1985.

Last month, Coca-Cola expanded its Diet Coke line-up to include Strawberry Guava and Blueberry Acai. In January 2018, the beverage maker updated its Diet Coke offerings with four new flavors aimed at millennials – Ginger Lime, Feisty Cherry, Zesty Blood Orange and Twisted Mango.

Read more at usatoday.com.