NEW YORK (CNN/Money) -
Vanilla Coke is coming, for sure.
Coca-Cola Co. said Monday it will start selling Vanilla Coke, confirming recent reports that the world's largest soft-drink maker was planning a new version of its flagship product.
Vanilla Coke will hit store shelves in the U.S. May 15, with distribution in Canada to follow, Coca-Cola (KO: down $1.00 to $52.36, Research, Estimates) said in a statement. "Consumers were excited about the idea of Vanilla Coke and we are pleased to give them what they want," Chairman Doug Daft said.
An article in industry newsletter Beverage Digest published in early April said numerous people at the Atlanta-based company expected a U.S. launch of vanilla Coke "within the next few months.''
At the time of the article, the company would only say, "We've always got a number of things in development."
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The packaging of Vanilla Coke will bear the "Coke" brand name in the company's familiar script writing. Coca-Cola said it will retool the label on Cherry Coke as well.
Coca-Cola has a mixed track record when it comes to new products. In 1985, it introduced Cherry Coke and New Coke. The sweeter New Coke turned out to be flat and the company re-introduced its original recipe as Classic Coke.
The Dow component is scheduled to release the results for its March quarter on Tuesday. Analysts expect the company to report a profit of 38 cents a share, excluding goodwill.