A Massive Amount of Cocaine Was Found at a French Coca-Cola Plant - Atlas Obscura
Our new kids' book is on sale! Shop now.

A Massive Amount of Cocaine Was Found at a French Coca-Cola Plant

The original recipe, as it were.

(Photo: Ken/CC BY 2.0)

Coca-Cola, in its original 19th-century formula, contained cocaine. The plant-based stimulant was legal back then: in Georgia, where Coca-Cola originates, alcohol was what everyone feared in 1886, the year the sugary, coked-up version of Coca-Cola first debuted. 

But after a racist campaign of drug hysteria aimed at African-Americans, Coca-Cola removed cocaine from its soda in 1903, or 11 years before the drug was illegal in the U.S. 

And this week in France, authorities uncovered around 815 pounds of cocaine at a Coca-Cola factory in Marseille, according to the Associated Press. Has Coca-Cola been lying to us all these years? A can of soda is a pretty good high. 

Apparently not, at least according to the company. 

“The first elements of the investigation have shown that employees are in no way involved,” Coca-Cola’s regional president told a local news website, according to the BBC.

A company official would say that, wouldn’t they? When French Coke becomes the next big thing, you heard it here first.