Coca-Cola Plus®, the first Coca-Cola approved by the Japanese government as a Food of Specified Health Use (FOSHU), was introduced in 2017. The product, which contains dietary fiber, exceeded launch volume projections, increasing the value of the functional sparkling category.

Kayo Kayabashi
The successful launch of Coca-Cola Plus is the result of Coca-Cola Japan delivering a product that meets consumer needs, and a savvy marketing team, led by Kayo Kobayashi, Coca-Cola TradeMark Director, who knew how to bring the product to market.

“Functional beverage is a growing segment in Japan due to the country’s large aging population. Coca-Cola Plus answers consumer desires to have a product that tastes good, functions well and has health-related benefits from the number one loved brand,” said Kobayashi. “Japanese consumers are sophisticated and often prefer to reach for a high-quality, health-conscious product.”

Coca-Cola Plus contains five grams of indigestible dextrin – a source of dietary fiber – per 470-ml bottle, and helps suppress fat absorption and moderate blood triglyceride levels post-meal.

The beverage was introduced as a no-calorie, premium-priced drink with great Coca-Cola taste plus functional benefits, and marketed to health- and taste-aware consumers 40 years and up to complement meals. Highlighting its unique offering, Coca-Cola Plus is sold in a white bottle with a Coca-Cola red cap, logo and description of its FOSHU benefits with the government approved stamp for credibility.

For her team’s launch of Coca-Cola Plus, Kobayashi received a Coca-Cola Global Innovations Award, specifically in the Innovations Experiments category, which supports the company’s emphasis on innovation and growth, and agile approach to getting products to market.

Kobayashi shared a glimpse of her winning mindset. She advised, “Don’t look back at how we did it in the past. Look at what consumers want now. That will create the next generation of this company’s business.”