One of the most successful brands in Coca-Cola’s stable, Coke Zero is “the only soft drink on the North American market to post double-digit sales growth for five straight years”, said the company in a statement.
“Caffeine-free products are growing in popularity, making up nearly 30% of all sparkling beverage sales in the U.S.,” said Stuart Kronauge, Head of Sparkling, Coca-Cola North America Group.
“By introducing Caffeine Free Coke Zero, we’re giving fans exactly what they want, making the brand accessible for enjoyment all day long.”
'The same great taste of original Coke Zero – without the caffeine'
A spokeswoman told FoodNavigator-USA that Caffeine-free Coke Zero was ideal for "consumers who are sensitive to caffeine, but love the taste of Coke Zero".
She added: "While the levels of caffeine in our sparkling beverages vary slightly by brand and portion size, the average amount of caffeine per 12 ounces of Coke is about 34 milligrams.
"To put this into context, this is more than an average size dark chocolate bar, but significantly less than a comparable amount of filter coffee. At Coca-Cola we were among the first companies in the U.S. to voluntarily list caffeine content for our beverages on the Nutrition Fact Panels.
"The new caffeine free Coke Zero is the same great taste of original Coke Zero – without the caffeine."
Caffeine Free Coke Zero will begin appearing on shelves in supermarkets, drug stores and mass merchants nationwide in mid-July, and will be available coast to coast in August.
It will be packaged in 12-packs of 12-ounce cans and 2-liter bottles.