View Full Version : Mexican coke, pepsi, fanta, crush, etc.

10-17-2005, 01:58 PM
If this has been discussed, I apologize. Someone please point the way cuz I couldn't find anything. If not...

Can someone comment on the legality of these drinks in the US? I have been able to get them for my cafe in NJ from Mexican distribution places. I've been told they're a gray market item but could never figure out why. Maybe it has something to do with my not speaking Spanish. Only one out of a whole bunch of Mexican distribution places has been willing to deliver the product. And the invoice always sez something completely different than what I'm getting. Now, this same place is telling me that only coke is legal and they can't get fanta, crush, sprite, 7 up, etc. No reason was given.

Can someone explain all this? Thanks, glenn

10-17-2005, 05:19 PM
I'm far from a legal expert but from what I know, this all has to do with the territorial rights of bottlers. I think that local bottlers get upset when someone buys a Mexican product because that cuts into their Coke or Pepsi sales.

I remember Pepsi causing a fuss about this a couple of years ago with some internet retailers. They forced them to stop selling the Mexican versions. I'm not sure how Coke feels about it. I've talked to people at the company who didn't seem to mind at all but I'm not sure if that is the "official position" on it.

There was a report in the Atlanta Journal Constitution several months ago that said both companies were actually thinking of importing Mexican sodas themselves in special glass bottles. Then, they would sell them in stores for a premium.

[ 10-17-2005, 04:20 PM: Message edited by: karks88 ]

10-17-2005, 05:51 PM
That reminds me when here in Mexico at the end of the 80's there was a lot of american sodas on sale in import stores: Coca-Cola classic, Cherry Coke, Diet Coke, Dr. Pepper, Pepsi, Shasta, and even Crystal Pepsi... American sodas were on sale until 1993, and I don't know the exact reason why they're not on sale anymore... maybe because the crisis on the economy that we suffered in that time that forced us to buy more mexican products to raise the economy...

In some years, a supermarket in Mexico, Soriana, sold some american sodas like: Caffeine Free Coca-Cola, Caffeine Free Diet Coke, Caffeine Free Dr. Pepper, Regular Dr. Pepper, Diet Dr. Pepper, CF Diet Dr. Pepper, Vanilla Coke, Cherry Coke and Sprite... but now they're not on sale anymore at Soriana, as karks said, maybe the local Coke bottlers in Mexico we're upset that were sold products of Coca-Cola that cut the sales of the mexican Coke products, because mexican people like me we're always curious about new or foreign products...

BTW, if somebody knows a place where I can find american Coke products in Aguascalientes, please let me know... thanks!

[ 10-17-2005, 04:55 PM: Message edited by: Ramón el Coca-Colero ]

10-17-2005, 06:41 PM
There's a bunch of large Mexican product distribution places near me (passaic, nj.) When I opened my cafe nearly a year ago, I stopped at several looking to buy the Mexican sodas, particularly coke. I ran up a brick wall in that no one wanted to deliver, though they all would sell it to me at their warehouse. Apparently, that way there was less of a paper trail.

One distributor told me that all of these sodas were gray market because of safety... the bottles would explode. I did experience this once. But it sounds a little crazy.. if it was a safety issue, it wouldn't be gray market, the government would be stepping in and making it illegal. This same distributor told me that he got a huge fine by the NYS Police when a truck was stopped and found to be carrying the sodas. This would indicate that the soda is illegal, not gray market.

I don't get the whole thing. Now, the one distributor who agreed to deliver (but gives me phony invoices), claims they can only get coke, not crush, fanta, sprite, pepsi or 7Up.

What I'm getting at is that all this doesn't sound like a territorial issue. Also, from what I understand, all of these sodas are readily available in California and border towns. Is that still the case?

There seems to be so much mystery behind all this. Totally confused...

10-18-2005, 12:00 AM
Here in Indianapolis, there must be at least 50, maybe 100 Mexican Supermarkets selling the stuff. We see Coke, Sprite, Lift, Fresca, Fanta Flavors, Pepsi, KAS, Seven UP, Squirt, Miranda, Manzanta Mia, Crush, & and several smaller brands. They are usually available in 355ML or 500ML glass. Occasionally I will see Coke in 237ML, 355ML or 500ML one-way glass bottles. I have even seen the occasional 2L PET.

[ 10-17-2005, 11:01 PM: Message edited by: bigrich ]

10-18-2005, 12:13 AM
There are lots of Mexican markets here in Nashville, but almost all I see is Jarritos. I've really developed a taste for their tamarind soda, BTW.

I don't see Coke at all; perhaps it's at the bigger markets.

10-18-2005, 02:42 AM
I have a question here, why Mexican sodas are sold there in U.S. only in glass bottles and not in 600 ml plastic bottles?

[ 10-18-2005, 11:03 AM: Message edited by: Ramón el Coca-Colero ]

10-18-2005, 02:42 AM
No, I live in Delaware, and we've got returnables in 12oz glass from Mexico here as well. Coke, Pepsi, Fanta, Sprite, Squirt.

If I go to a Mexican store about 2 hours west of here, I can find other stuff, like Crush, Tropical, etc.

10-22-2005, 04:53 PM
That's a good question! When I visited Mexico last year, I was really surprised to find very few glass bottles in the stores I visited. Yet, if I want to order some over the net I am basically limited to glass bottles. You'd think with shipping costs, etc. that distributors would be looking more towards plastic and cans.

Maybe the glass helps distinguish the Mexican product more from the American product?

10-23-2005, 03:29 AM
Originally posted by karks88:
When I visited Mexico last year, I was really surprised to find very few glass bottles in the stores I visited. A lot of stores only sell products in plastic bottles, but in grocery stores or "abarrotes" and restaurants, the soda in glass bottle is still on sale, but Pepsi now is hard to find it in glass bottles in the grocery stores... only in restaurants.
Some sodas that are still available in glass:
Coca-Cola: Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Light (in some states), Fresca, Lift and Delaware Punch (in some states).
Pepsi: Pepsi, Pepsi Light (in some states), 7up, Mirinda, Manzanita Sol and Kas.

10-24-2005, 05:25 PM
The closest place I can find Mexican Coke or Pepsi is in NY. The Mexican Grocery stores here have the American Version in the 8oz glass bottles which is kinda sad, unless someone knows otherwise New England does not have any Mexican Coke or Pepsi.

12-07-2005, 10:20 PM
I just returned from my neighborhood Shell and they had Mexican Returnable Coke in 435ML size with a plastic screw off cap. These are a nice site, all new stock and with the new Coca-Cola label. These are much like the old 500ml bottles Coke used to use in Michigan before the returnables were discontinued.

12-07-2005, 10:56 PM
If I don't get wrong... these bottles here in Mex. are only available in the state of Coahuila and in a town called Matehuala in San Luis Potosi... here in my town those 435 ml bottles haven't arrived yet, the closest thing we have is the 450 ml plastic bottle... I hope they come to my town soon!

[ 12-07-2005, 10:05 PM: Message edited by: Ramón Coca-Colero ]

12-08-2005, 09:07 AM
When I visitied Mexico you could not find the returnable bottles in the tourist areas. But if you got outside of those areas into the country they were all over.

Nick Laugher
12-09-2005, 06:51 PM
Mexico has cool Pepsi things like Pepsi Fire and Pepsi Ice.

12-09-2005, 11:43 PM
Nnnnope... Pepsi Ice have never been released here (maybe you mean Pepsi Blue), but there's 7UP Ice here...

Pepsi Fire is now discontinued ( good! smile.gif ), also Pepsi Blue, both were limited editions, but 7UP Ice is still on sale...

[ 12-09-2005, 10:45 PM: Message edited by: Ramón Coca-Colero ]

Nick Laugher
12-10-2005, 02:11 PM
Im pretty sure I saw Pepsi Fire and Pepsi Ice in Mexico when I was down there...hmm.