Mexican Coke

It’s the Real Thing
For those of us who can still remember what Coca Cola tasted like before 1986 – when it was sweetened with sugar cane, we can go back in time each time we order a coke in most Mexican restaurants in Southern California.

Here in the US Coca Cola plants use corn syrup to sweeten the drink instead of cane sugar. Mexico and other countries still use cane sugar. There is a difference in taste – regardless of what the Coca Cola company says.

Prior to the mid-eighties, corn syrup was cheaper than cane sugar so the company changed the recipe to save money. People complained, but the executives said people would get used to it. Sales went down for a long time, but eventually people did get used to it.

Food vs Fuel
Times have changed – yet again. When the federal government started to focus on alternatives to petroleum for our cars, ethanol/petroleum blends became the next big thing. World ethanol production for transport fuel tripled between 2000 and 2007.

This has become a problem because the huge corporate farm conglomerates that grow corn now receive government subsidies to sell their corn to the ethanol producers – ignoring the people who need the corn for food. Big shock, huh?

You may have noticed corn is more expensive and is no longer available all summer long. The problem isn’t just in the US. A few years ago, the price of tortillas in Mexico doubled. The government now provides subsidies.

You haven’t heard much about it on the news, but ethanol fuels are not as efficient as petroleum and they damage engines. Gas mileage drops by around 30% with ethanol and it causes corrosion. It can’t be use in airplanes or boats either. If you use Mobile gas, you may have noticed a difference in the performance of your car.

Will ethanol become just another boondoggle like MTBE? Maybe. In the meantime enjoy a song from another Mexican export, singer Arielle Dombasle.

Although Arielle and her brother, Gilbert, were born in Connecticut, they lived with their maternal grandparents in Mexico after their mother died in 1964.

Rum and Coca Cola: