Inca Kola

8 Jun

In Peru, everybody grows up seeing Inca Kola at supermarkets, restaurants, basically everywhere, just as Americans grow up with Coca Cola. But what other country has a national soda  that can hold its own against Coke?

Here’s what it looks like:

It’s a soda that people say it tastes like bubble gum, and comes in only classic flavor and color.  The graphic design and marketing strategies have very much influenced my opinion about Inca Kola.

In the ad above, we can see the the obvious gold color, attributing to the Incas’ wealth in gold. Th ad below demonstrates a catchphrase in English naming it “the golden kola.”

Because of this phrase, when asked what it tastes like, I always said it has a unique “golden taste.” There are also ethnic-looking borders on the label and across the ad. This celebration of ethnic pride makes it a legitimately Peruvian product.

IT started back in 1910 when an English couple began experimenting with a Peruvian plant called hierba Luísa (lemon verbena). It has come a long way, being sold right next to coke at McDonald’s in Peru. Coca Cola has bought half of Inca Cola, but Inca Cola still is highly preferred in Peru. When signing the contract at a press conference in 1999, the Coca Cola CEO M. Douglas Ivester had to drink a glass of Inca Cola.

This soda is a staple in Peruvian culture; if you look at the picture above, there’s a caption that says “El sabor del Peru.” In English, it means “The flavor of Peru.” You can’t get more Peruvian than that.

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