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Coca-Cola heroes its red disc in new global packaging design

After months of speculation Coca-Cola has unveiled a new global packaging design across its range as it catapults ahead with its 'one brand' strategy to accelerate sales of its low sugar variants.

Going forward Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Coke Zero and Coca-Cola Life will be united under a single visual identity system anchored by the brands' 'Red Disc'. The drinks giant hinted at such a move in January during a global press conference where it revealed a revamped global advertising strategy to promote all of its products at the same time.

The new packaging debuts next month in Mexico, and similar versions of the Red Disc graphics will roll out into additional markets throughout 2016 and into 2017.

In a blog post Coca-Cola's VP of global design James Sommerville, said the new designs represent another "jigsaw puzzle piece" in Coke's 'one brand' strategy.

"During our design process, we saw the Red Disc as the one design element that could unite the trademark visually. Coca-Cola, any Coca-Cola is refreshing, uplifting and delicious… and the presence of the Red Disc on our new packaging communicates that message. This also marks the first time in our 130-year history that Coca-Cola’s visual identity system has been shared across not only all media, but all Trademark products."

Asked why Coca-Cola didn’t focus more on its bottle shape or ribbon, Sommerville said while important, the disc better leverages the brand's history in a contemporary way.

It has also rebranded Coke Zero as Coca-Cola Zero Sugar to reposition the brand towards a health brand, backed by a £10m marketing campaign.

The new packaging is the latest in a string of recent moves by the drinks giant to turn around flagging sales as consumers become increasingly focused on their in take of sugar. Previously Coke's strategy had been to launch a new brand in response to consumer consumption trends and therefore a new personality, which chief marketing officer, Marcos de Quinto said in January has “contradicted the personality of Coca-Cola and undermined the brand promise which is that Coca-Cola is for everyone”.

Natalie Mortimer

Natalie is The Drum's fashion, design, luxury and food & drink reporter.

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