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The Real Cost of Coke

This post originally appeared on Food Politics. I received this note yesterday from Michael Jacobson, director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, about his latest column in The Huffington Post:
How would you feel if you had to pay $8.50 a gallon for gasoline? Then why on Earth would you pay that much for water and high-fructose corn syrup? That’s how much Coke costs in those new 7.5-ounce, 90-calorie cans.  Calorie-counters may appreciate the small size (90 calories) but dollar-counters beware:  We did a little math and it turns out that Coke in the new can costs between 50- and 140-percent more than Coke in the old 12-ounce cans.  Basically, Coke is charging two or three cents more per ounce for Coke in a smaller can—and this from a company that throws temper tantrums when lawmakers propose a one-cent-per-ounce tax on soda!
I once asked a group of retailing executives why the cost of smaller size containers was so high (surely the containers don’t cost thatmuch).  They said: “if customers want smaller portions they ought to be willing to pay for them.”  Oh.
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