Fun Facts About American Soda

4 minute read

Fanta Sodas

Of all the things we enjoy in life, soda has to be near the top of the list. Whether you call it fizzy drinks, pop, or soda, you've probably got your favourite. But did you know that there are distinct differences between the UK and American food and drink? Let's dive in and look at our top fun facts about American soda. 

Where Did American Soda Come From? 

By the early 1800s, the USA had gained its independence and was focused on building a country full of strong and patriotic people. Entrepreneurs wanted to create a sparkling drink to mimic the naturally sparkling minerals that contained sodium. The idea was to create a refreshing beverage that lasted a lot longer than natural mineral water.

Mineral water was seen as a cure for many ailments, especially among the rich, so inventors wanted to capitalise on the new trend. By 1809, there was an established way of making sparkling mineral water using acid and bicarbonate of soda. 

As the years went on, manufacturers added exciting flavours to the sparkling water, and that's where American soda originated. By the 1900s, soda was popular in pharmacies and concoctions were often seen as cures to common ailments. 

America Has Hundreds of Soda Brands

It's impossible to tell how many soda brands America has because there are so many to choose from. But there are fan favourites, including: 

  • Coca-Cola 
  • Pepsi
  • Dr Pepper 
  • A&W
  • Mountain Dew
  • Sprite
  • Schweppes
  • Canada Dry
  • Pibb
  • Crush 

According to Statista, from 2004 to 2019, Coca-Cola dominated the soft drinks market, with Pepsi coming second. 

The Coca-Cola Company Continues to Thrive 

Coca-Cola is unarguably the most recognised soft drink in the world. Wherever you travel, you'll usually be able to find a bottle of traditional Cola, Diet Coke or Coke Zero. The company is worth more than KFC, Budweiser and Subway Combined. Market.US also states that over 1.6 billion bottles of Coke are sold each day. 

The company also makes Sprite and many other drinks which explains the company's success. But for many people, Pepsi is the only soft drink for them. 

Pepsi is a Close Competitor 

The Pepsi company produces its own Cola style drink, which many people prefer due to its sweeter taste. Statistics from Market.US show that Pepsi continues to grow in popularity each year, which shows why it's Coca-Cola's biggest competitor. 

Pepsi produces a range of popular soft drinks, including Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Pepsi Max, Mountain Dew and Gatorade. 

In the UK, a taste test study showed that consumers preferred Pepsi Max over regular Coke. Still, Coca-Cola continues to outperform in sales, thanks to branding, and restaurants stock it as their beverage of choice. 

The Mystery of Root Beer 

Ask a group of people in the UK what Root Beer is, and only a handful will know. But it's one of the USA's most popular drink choices, and many companies offer their own unique Root Beer recipe. 

Root Beer is a unique tasting carbonated drink that can contain alcohol or be alcohol-free. A pharmacist invented it, and four brands in the US compete to become the most popular. 

Mugs and A&W are the two most popular brands, offering diet variations of the refreshing drink. While Root Beer is exceptionally popular in the US, it's almost unheard of in the UK. 

There's no particular reason as to why Root Beer is unpopular in the UK. If we look at drinks such as Vimto and Irn Bru, that are only available in the UK, it's clear that they have an acquired taste. Perhaps Root Beer isn't hugely popular because it's something people have to grow up on; otherwise, they don't get the flavour. 

Fun Fact: Interestingly, McDonald's attempted to sell Root Beer throughout the UK in the 1980s. But the drink proved to be so unpopular; they decided to stop selling it in 1992. Many people compare it to tasting like medicine. 

The US and UK Both Love Soda 

As the years go by, soda continues to reign in its universal popularity. In the USA, children drink twice as much soda as they do milk. This fact is interesting, because 25 years ago, it was the other way round. 

Perhaps the rise in consumption is thanks to the abundance of diet versions, which parents know are healthier for their children. Coca-Cola introduced its first diet beverage in 1963, naming the drink Tab. Unsurprisingly, Pepsi wasn’t far behind and the company created Diet Pepsi in 1964. 

Tab was popular in the 60s and 70s, but the Coca-Cola company introduced Diet Coke in 1982, and consumers preferred the sweeter taste. Interestingly, Tab survived in America, going through many changes, including its inception as an energy drink. The company discontinued it in 2020. 

American Soda Contains More Sugar 

If there's one thing the Americans love, it's sugar. Statistics from Infoplease show that the US is the 8th country with the highest rates of obesity in the world. It tops Canada, Australia, New Zealand and all of Europe, showing how intense the issue is. 

Looking at the difference between the worlds most popular brands, it's clear that the USA variations contain more sugar. Let's take a look at the content in each can: 

Soft Drink 

UK Sugar Content

USA Sugar Content 




Dr Pepper 






Schweppes Tonic Water



OK, so Root Beer isn’t everyone’s favourite, but many people in the UK love the unique taste. Drinks from other countries are an exotic and exciting alternative to what we’re familiar with, and specialist USA confectioners specialise in bringing consumers a range of American soda drinks

With so many brands to choose from and an abundance of diet versions, American soda makes the perfect addition to your product line. 


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