Diet Coke fizzes past Pepsi

By Charles Riley, staff reporter


NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Score one for the Coca-Cola Company.

Diet Coke unseated Pepsi as the second most popular carbonated soft drink in 2010, according to data from Beverage Digest.

Coke -- the flagship brand of Coca-Cola (KO, Fortune 500) -- is still No. 1, racking up 17% market share last year by selling 1.6 billion cases of soda.

In second place, Diet Coke had a 9.9% market share. Pepsi (PEP, Fortune 500) ended the year with a 9.5% share, a 4.8% decrease in volume over the previous year.

The switch marks a sea change in the industry. According to John Sicher, the editor and publisher of Beverage Digest, Pepsi has held the second position "for decades."

Sicher attributed the decline in Pepsi's market share to its Pepsi Refresh Project marketing campaign, which is focused on community service.

While certainly meritorious, Sicher said that "in the cola wars, it didn't give the Pepsi brand the justice it deserves."

Pepsi representatives were not immediately available for comment.

Mountain Dew, Dr. Pepper and Sprite rounded out the top six individual brands.

In 2010, the industry experienced a slight volume decrease, with business declining -0.5%, to a total of 9.4 billion cases. But that loss was much less than in recent years. Total volume has declined since a 2004 peak of around 10.2 billion cases. To top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 17,730.11 -27.80 -0.16%
Nasdaq 5,009.21 -3.91 -0.08%
S&P 500 2,076.78 -0.64 -0.03%
Treasuries 2.39 -0.02 -1.03%
Data as of 8:30am ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 17.03 0.00 0.00%
Apple Inc 126.44 0.00 0.00%
Intel Corp 30.56 0.00 0.00%
Micron Technology In... 19.07 0.00 0.00%
General Electric Co 26.78 0.00 0.00%
Data as of Jul 2
Sponsors

Sections

Greece votes Sunday in a crisis referendum that will determine the country's future in the eurozone. The result is too close to call. More

Entrepreneur Guillaume Gauthereau is on a mission to build a 50 to a 100 acre sanctuary in New York to provide refuge to honey bees. More

The most expensive schools in the nation are charging close to $50,000 a year in tuition and fees alone. More