- Coca-Cola will stop making tablets by the end of 2020, the beverage giant announced on Friday.
- The news has rekindled a wave of sadness and shock among tab lovers, with fond memories of drinks from the 70’s to children.
- “It’s the end of an era, the death of a dream!” Author Molly Jong-Fast told Business Insider.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The long battle of tabb lovers to fill their fridges with baking soda is over.
On Friday, Coca-Cola announced that it would retire, along with other “underperforming” drinks such as Odwala and Diet Coke Fisty Cherry.
According to Coca-Cola, Tab is set to officially retire on December 31, 2020, after more than five decades. The decision is part of Coca-Cola’s strategy of killing “zombie” brands in an effort to focus on fewer brands with stronger sales.
read more: Coke’s top coconut water brand Zico, food and beverage companies cut out underperforming products during the epidemic
“It’s the end of an era, the death of a dream!” Author Molly Jong-Fast Told Business Insider.
Jong-Fast said she had not tasted Tab Tab for a long time. However, like someone born in 1978, the news aroused her sadness – even though she remembered the drink as “very sweet and slightly flat paint thinner”, while noting that she had no experience taking paint thinner.
લીMolly Jong-Fast🏡 (લીMollyJongFast) 16 October October, 2020
Jongong-Fast is not the only person who feels extraordinary about the loss of the tab. Timothy Duner, a 1-year-old Timothy Duner, told Business Insider that the discussion of drinks evokes memories of childhood chefs.
“It’s a sad day for us Tab Tab drinkers,” said Duner, host of the Fretwaves podcast covering supply chain and trucking news.
Duner admits that, today, he rarely drinks beverages – which he describes as carbonated sweet and sour with added caramel color. Yet, he said he leads to drinks.
“I rarely come so low. So, when I see it in the wild … I’ll buy a six pack at least once a year.”
Others refuse to give up the opportunity to buy a toy.
Natalie Cuneman has spent decades searching for the tab. As the founder of the website ILoveTab.com, which he started in 1994, Kueniman is in a unique position to help others follow baking soda. On Friday morning, he said his inbox was filled with emails from disastrous Tabb lovers.
“People feel different about TabB than other drinks – very dedicated,” Kueniman told Business Insider.
Tab obsessives have been struggling to get their hands on soda for years
Kueniman is one of the super fans who specializes in diet cola. The tab is sweetened with saccharin, which gives the drink its distinctive and polar flavor. Fear of the ’80s can cause cancer in the’ 80s can trigger a reaction against TB which a drink can never completely overcome.
“People are like, it has a disgusting taste, it’s pink, it’s overall,” Kueniman said. “If someone ever tastes it and doesn’t want to put on a big show about how fat it is – they’ll love it.”
Tab Tab has been disappearing from grocery shelves for years, as various Coca-Cola bottlers have stopped producing beverages. The bottler’s decision usually shuts down a wave of emails on ILoveTab.com from shoppers desperate to find a drink. (Kueniman has an arrangement to keep stock in the backroom with his local store, even if he doesn’t keep it on his shelves.)
While the tab’s availability has plummeted and leaked in recent years, it suddenly dried up earlier this year amid a coronavirus epidemic and a shortage of aluminum.
“You can still get it in March,” Kueniman said. “Then, in early April, I started getting some more messages [about shortages.] It has been non-stop ever since. ”
Some taboo lovers believe it may be time to let go of the drink. Duner said he is considering quitting soda. The disadvantage of this is that it can be a catalyst for you to take a plunge and cut soft drinks together.
“Diet soda is too bad for you so maybe it’s good,” Jong-Fast said.
Kuenman said he was not surprised by Coca-Cola’s decision to hit the tab, especially since the company has not sold the drink significantly in more than two decades. But, he is not ready to give up the fight. The ILoveTab.com founder plans to reach out to other TabBab lovers and ask them to contact Coca-Cola, bottlers and distributors.
Kueniman’s personal stock is now down in a single box. She was planning to drink her last cup on election night. Now, Kueniman is not sure what she will do with her final bin.
“The only way to really save the tab is to convert it to the next pay generation,” said Kueniman. “I think Coke missed out on a huge opportunity to market in a really fun way over the years. I don’t know why they never did.”