Coca Cola Formula Kept Secret by Rabbi


coke-coca-colaA radio station in Chicago claims to have discovered the secret recipe for Coca-Cola, reported Tuesday. The website for Chicago Public Radio show This American Life stated it found a list of ingredients for Coca-Cola in a 32-year-old newspaper – and published it.

Even if the radio station has indeed revealed the Coke secret, it would not be the first time that the formula has become known to non-employees of Coca Cola. Arutz Sheva has learned that Rav Avraham Shapira Zts”l, former Head of Yeshivat Merkaz HaRav, was Chief Rabbi when Coca Cola asked for a hechsher, or a stamp of kosherness, from the Israeli Chief Rabbinate. In order to receive the approval, Coca Cola had to divulge the contents of the soft drink to the rabbi. Indeed, the rabbi approved the hechsher certificate for Coca Cola and kept it secret until his dying breath.

The Chicago station reported that the Atlanta Journal-Constitution published a photo of a book containing a handwritten replica of the original recipe in 1979.

According to website, the recipe is so secret that it only two Coca-Cola executives know it. Possibly the most closely shielded secret recipe in the world, it is rumored to be guarded 24 hours a day in a vault. It was first mixed by medicinal chemist John Pemberton in 1886.

The formula published by the station supposedly contains the exact measures of all the different oils and spices needed for the soft drink’s secret ingredient, which is known as “Merchandise 7X.”

Despite making up only one percent of the drink’s total formula, Merchandise 7X is what provides its unique taste. According to the recipe replica, it consists of alcohol, orange oil, lemon oil, nutmeg oil, coriander, cinnamon and neroli – which is produced from the blossom of the bitter orange tree (Citrus aurantium).

Coca-Cola would not confirm or deny that the wall of secrecy surrounding the formula had been breached. A spokeswoman making the following statement:

“The ingredients used in our beverages are listed on the product labels and many people have tried over time to crack the secret formula of Coca-Cola. That secret combination of ingredients holds a special place in the history and mythology of Coca-Cola – s omething we continue to celebrate as we mark our 125th anniversary this year.”

Read more at Arutz Shevah.

{Arutz Shevah/ Newscenter}


  1. Rabbi belsky once told me that ony two ingredients in coke may pose a kashrus problem and the ou carefully monitors their production to make sure they are kosher.

    i asked him which two ingredients. he responded that he cant say as he is bound to a non disclosure contract. i asked him if the ou was made a aware of the secret ingredient and the proportions used. he said yes. “we would never give hasgacha unless we ahd full access to everything”. i told him that i heard they presented the OU with a list of 20 ingredients of which they actually only use 10-15 and they are not telling the OU which 10-15 they are using. he said that’s nonsense. “we cant just rely on their word of whats in there – we must see for ourselves – we have to have access to all their inventory and chemical lab logs, and see whats going into the product otherwise – we cannot give a proper hashgacha”. “however, the OU has signed non disclosure agreements that we cannot divulge this information. we have to sign such agreements for many companies -not only coke.”

  2. A great talmid chochom from the early Atlanta yishuv, rav Gefen Z”L, also gave a hechsher on coke. It was his daughter who saw corn syrup as an ingredient and told her father who met with coke attorney’s who instituted that sugar should be used on Pesach.
    Ayin mishpacha magazine for more on this maaseh.