Royal Crown Cola Anyone?

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by W5HRO, Jun 8, 2016.


Which of the below do you like best?

Poll closed Jun 8, 2017.
  1. Royal Crown Cola (RC)

  2. Coke-Cola

  3. Pepsi

    0 vote(s)
  1. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    I don't know about anyone else, but I still think RC Cola tastes better than Coke and Pepsi combined. What about you?

    The Tragic and True History of RC Cola

    May 17, 2016

    Coke, Pepsi, and RC Cola
    Who drinks RC Cola? Do you drink it? If not, do you know someone who does? These are questions that both diehard Coca-Cola and Pepsi fans alike want to know. Since RC Cola's inception, it seems like the company has sat on the sidelines, happy to just exist, while titan sized brands like Coke and Pepsi duke it out for supremacy. However, the company could've gave Coke and Pepsi a run for their money in a very plausible alternate reality, and they actually did for a short period of time.

    RC Cola was developed in 1905
    Columbus, Georgia native, Claud A. Hatcher was a pharmacist and grocery store owner who sold a lot of Coca-Cola at his store. He sold so much of it in fact that he contacted the Coke company asking for a discount or some other kind of acknowledgement for his contribution to the company. The local Coke representative declined Hatcher's request. In frustration, Hatcher told the representative that he would no longer sale the brand and he would create his own brand.

    Hatcher created Royal Crown Ginger Ale after months of working
    After working for months in his basement, tinkering with different flavors, he created Royal Crown Ginger Ale. He made it as an effervescent alternative to Coca-Cola's bestseller, which was laced with cocaine at the time. Hatcher's drink became quite popular in a short amount of time. This gave him and his father the courage to stop being grocery store owners and become a full-time soda bottlers.

    His next development was Chero-Cola

    Since he knew that he couldn't just coast off of the success of one drink, Hatcher made a new drink. This was a cherry-flavored cola that would finally turn the company into a legitimate soda maker. It was a very popular beverage and Coke took notice. In the early 1900s, Coke was the most profitable soda company and eager to sue potential competitors.

    Coke sued Hatcher for trademark infringement over the word "cola."

    Hatcher fought the lawsuit for several years while also building Chero-Cola's distribution to more than 700 bottlers. He argued that his soda was not an imitator and his sales reflected this claim.

    In 1923, a judge ruled in favor of Coca-Cola
    Hatcher was forced to drop "cola" from the company name. A drink called "Chero" was so much less appealing and definitely didn't sound the same and this led to a clear decline in sales. Hatcher decided to change the company name to Nehi (pronounced "knee-high"), which was his most popular fruit drink at the time.

    In 1929, Nehi's sales took a major hit
    This was because of the Great Depression and companies everywhere were experiencing a massive decline in sales. Even worse, Hatcher died in 1933 and the company was left to its sales director, H.R. Mott. He was determined to grow the company.

    He got rid of poor performing drinks focused on the top sellers
    He reintroduced Chero-Cola without the cherry flavoring and with a new name. In 1934, Nehi released Royal Crown, and over the following years its sales drastically increased.

    In 1944, the courts ruled that Coke did not own the word "cola."
    This allowed Royal Crown to become Royal Crown Cola, or RC Cola. The company then focused on a nationwide campaign to increase sales. They invested in print and television ads featuring Shirley Temple, Lucille Ball, Joan Crawford, and Bing Crosby.

    "You Bet RC Tastes Best!"
    The company held public taste tests across the country putting them against both Coke and Pepsi and declared itself the winner. It was the first time a company had ever done a promotion like this before. Even if the results had been rigged, what mattered was the people who saw the ads believed them.

    RC continued to be innovative

    In 1954, it became the first company to distribute soda in aluminum cans. After seeing the success of soda in aluminum cans, the company began selling soda in 16-ounce bottles for extra thirsty people. It officially became the Royal Crown Cola Company in 1959.

    In 1962, a new low calorie soda called Diet Rite hit the shelves
    Coke and Pepsi had completely underestimated the demand for a low calorie soda. The soda rocketed to number four on the soda sales chart within just a year and a half of its release. Coke and Pepsi both scrambled to release a similar drink, but neither were nearly as successful as Diet Rite.

    However, their success didn't last long
    The mid '60s saw more and more studies suggesting that the chemical in diet drinks (cyclamate) was hazardous to humans. Sales dropped dramatically because everyone thought diet soda was going to give them cancer. Suddenly the market they had invested all of their resources in had vanished.

    Throughout the '70s and '80s, the company continued to lose market share
    Although RC continued to be the most innovative cola company in the industry, Coke and Pepsi had taken over the market and left RC Cola in their dust. These days, however, Coke and Pepsi are struggling to stay relevant in a nation of people who are interested in health. One thing is for sure, had things gone just a little bit differently, it could have been RC Cola sponsoring the Olympics instead of Coca Cola.
  2. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    Here's the other history, anyone remember this?

  3. W6MQI

    W6MQI Member

    I haven't had a RC cola in years in fact I may have been a little kid the last time. Shasta cola is another one don't even know were it's sold anymore? Shasta still has a plant in Hayward all though every time I drive by it looks to be shut down not muchactivity going on.
  4. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    When I moved out here back in 2000 I could not find RC anywhere. Then about 2 years later I came across it at one of the dollar stores by accident up near Hayward when I was working up in that area after the .com / telecomm bust.

    It wasn't being distributed out here on the west coast very much until just a few years ago. It finally started popping up on the shelves at Luckys, Nobhill and etc. Now they almost always have it unless it's sold out. They usually only have one small row of a few 32 oz bottles though or a box of it in the cans. I think some Walmarts may have the cans now.

    I can almost guarantee you that if you take the old taste test you will agree. 9 times out of 10 people will say RC tastes better than Coke or Pepsi. Just get 3 cans and take a sip from each one. Its actually started making a comeback again. Even their old Diet Rite cola tasted better the Coke’s version of it called Tab. Remember Tab?

    Anyway, RC was always available in Oklahoma and in the south and in some places that’s all they will drink.
  5. Opcom

    Opcom Member

    RC is often less expensive as well. A true value!
  6. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    I bought a 24-pack of RC in the cans this last weekend for only $4.99 at one of the discount grocery stores where you bag your own. The 24-packs of Pepsi were the same price, $4.99.