Tuesday, July 31, 2012


Apparently, there were a few cans of "Zevia" soda - whatever that is - lying around at Amber's office. Those that tried it said it was pretty bad, and thus, they were having some trouble getting rid of all of them. I thought I'd help them out.

What is Zevia? Well, it's a brand of diet sodas - this particular one is a cola - sweetened by an artificial sweetener called "Stevia", which I hadn't heard of, either. Wikipedia to the rescue!

Turns out that Stevia has been widely available for years in Japan, but it wasn't approved as a food additive in the United States until 2008 (it was only allowed as a dietary supplement prior to that), and it wasn't approved in Europe until last year. Although, it's possible that the reason FDA approval took so long was due to political reasons (Stevia is grown overseas as far as I can tell), as opposed to actual health and safety concerns.

So, how is Zevia? Well...not so good. It has a pretty bad aftertaste. And, I noticed that the soda was very well carbonated, which I believe is a trick many producers of generic sodas use - increase the carbonation level in order to help mask a lack of flavor (or, in Zevia's case, bad flavor). I didn't finish the can.

However, given all the lead up, I was expecting something as bad as some of the foreign sodas they have at the end of the World of Coca-Cola tour in Atlanta. It's been many years since I've been there, but some of the foreign sodas they have there are truly, truly terrible. Zevia was not in that category. Not even close. But I didn't feel motivated to finish the can, especially since I don't drink much soda anymore anyway.

And hey, now I know what Stevia is. Will packets of Stevia ever join Sweet and Low / Equal / Splenda as standard sweeteners at restaurants nationwide? And if so, what color will their packets be? (Other artificial sweeteners have pretty standard colors: Sweet and Low pink, Equal blue, Splenda yellow. My guess for the packet color of Stevia, if it ever gains nationwide prominence, is green. But if Zevia is the premier Stevia product currently on the market, then that's not a good sign.


Drinks for Diabetics said...

Stevia has a licorice like aftertaste, still it is much better than sugar.

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