Here is good news: Diet Coke sales are falling. U.S. soft drink sales in general have been declining by about 1 percent per year for the last decade or so, but the trend reached diet soda late, and Diet Coke specifically declined by 4 percent compared to a year ago. The chief complaint about soda is that it causes weight gain. Consumers had been switching to diet soda because of the promise that it wouldn’t contribute to weight gain. That promise was long since proven false, and that news, it seems, is now getting out to the public.
The price of soft drinks, particularly bottled soda, is another complaint. Consumers know that soft drinks are just dressed-up tap water, that they are paying premium prices for an empty product, but this thought may intrude only after prices go up beyond a certain point. I remember how I stopped buying milk, a product with similar problems. The thought was something along the lines of, “I’m paying $70 a year for this?” I was never a regular soda drinker, but the price of soda is now high enough that I imagine it could be inspiring the same reaction.