Junk Food Guide: Jolt Cola

"All the sugar and twice the caffeine."

Jolt cola, a product of the ’80’s was put out prior to the energy drink craze. Shortly after its 1985 launch, the power drink was featured on the David Letterman show and in USA Today.

Other product placement of Jolt Cola included the movies Deep Impact, Gremlins 2, Men At Work, Basket Case 2, 11:14, and Looney Tunes: Back in Action.

As a cola, Jolt didn’t have the smooth taste like Coke or Pepsi but rather tasted like a store-brand soda with, well, a jolt.

The syrupy soft drink has been offering twice the caffeine with all of the taste of regular cola, according to its peppy marketing campaign, for 24 years.

Jolt Cola could be found in flavors including lemon-lime, Raspberry, Black Cherry, and even a diet version called Ultimate. The latest incarnation of Jolt Cola no longer uses pure cane sugar but contained lots of caffeine.

It was targeted towards students and young professionals, stressing its use as a stimulant in a similar manner as energy drinks.

The original Jolt Cola formula contained real cane sugar and 72 milligrams of caffeine, which was the highest amount of the stimulant allowed by federal law.

The latest Jolt cola was a 23.5 ounce can of Jolt Energy, which contained 280 milligrams of caffeine in a resealable bottle that resembled a large AA battery, It was this bottle however, that lead to the company’s ultimate demise.

Pummeled by increasing competition, and a contract for cans it didn’t have the money to buy, Wet Planet Beverages filed for Chapter 11 protection in September 2009.

Raise a bottle to Jolt if you can find it.

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