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Mountain Dew

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Current Mountain Dew Logo
Mountain Dew

Type Citrus soft drink
Manufacturer PepsiCo, Inc.
Country of Origin Flag of United States United States
Introduced 1964 (nation-wide)
Variants Diet Mountain Dew
Caffeine Free Diet Mountain Dew
Caffeine Free Mountain Dew
Mountain Dew Code Red
Diet Mountain Dew Code Red
Mountain Dew LiveWire
Mountain Dew Pitch Black
Mountain Dew Pitch Black II
Mountain Dew Baja Blast
Mountain Dew MDX
Mountain Dew AMP

Mountain Dew is a caffeinated, sweet, citrus-flavored soft drink produced by PepsiCo, Inc. It was invented in Marion, Virginia and first marketed in Knoxville, Tennessee in 1948, then by the Minges family in Fayetteville, North Carolina and across the United States in 1964. [1] When removed from its characteristic green bottle, Mountain Dew is bright yellow-green and semi-opaque.


[edit] Ingredients

Mountain Dew lists its ingredients as:

Mountain Dew (and its energy drink counterpart known as AMP) often incurs the disapproval of some health experts [2] due to its relatively high caffeine content for a soft drink (or energy drink), despite the fact that typical brewed coffee has a much higher caffeine dosage for equal volume. However, Mountain Dew marketed in Australia and Canada (see Dew Fuel/Mountain Dew Energy varieties below) — as well as several U.S. states — has no caffeine added at all (Health Canada states that caffeine can't be in food products that contain orange juice). Nevertheless, Mountain Dew contains tartrazine (“FD&C Yellow No. 5” in the US), which could lead to allergic reactions in some people. This has also led to an urban legend that the Yellow No. 5 in Mountain Dew reduces the sperm count of male drinkers. This is false. [3] Mountain Dew, like many citrus flavored sodas, contains citric acid and sodium benzoate.

Recent reports to the Food and Drug Administration indicate that some soft drinks (especially of the diet variety) may contain high levels of benzene that are above the FDA's limit for public drinking water. [4] The source of the benzene appears to be from a reaction of ascorbic acid or erythorbic acid, and sodium benzoate. Mountain Dew contains erythorbic acid and sodium benzoate. However, calcium disodium EDTA and sugars have been shown to inhibit benzene creation, and Mountain Dew has not been found to have toxic levels of benzene. There has been a call, recently, for soft drink companies to address the toxic chemical reaction that takes place in many similar beverages. [5]

Diet Mountain Dew contains aspartame. Mountain Dew's brominated vegetable oil (BVO) is another source of contention. More than 100 countries ban BVO for its adverse health effects. However, the exact quantity of bromine put into fat cells from BVO is questioned.

The drink was sold in the UK for a short time, and later got pulled off the shelves. There were many rumors surrounding this. One rumor was that the drink had too much sugar, another rumor was the drink wasn't as successful as the US because it didn't have the same amount of caffeine.

[edit] Marketing and promotion

Bascom Lamar Lunsford's original recording of "Old Mountain Dew" was used as the first advertising theme for the newly created Mountain Dew soda.

Mountain Dew was originally marketed as "zero proof moonshine" and had pictures of hillbillies on the bottle until 1973.

Today's target demographic is radically different. The drink is mainly marketed to people in the 12-30 year old demographic group, creating a connection to outdoor activities like extreme sports and to the video game culture. [6] The name Mountain Dew was first trademarked by two brothers, Barney and Ally Hartman, who ran a bottling plant in Knoxville, TN.

Mountain Dew is the main sponsor of the Dew Action Sports Tour extreme sports tournament and the Summer and Winter X Games. It is also the main sponsor of the Mountain Dew Vertical Challenge, a series of free races open to anyone, comprised of an East and West circuit.

[edit] Varieties

An old 10 US fluid ounce Mountain Dew bottle (date unknown): "It'll tickle yore innards!"
An old 10 US fluid ounce Mountain Dew bottle (date unknown): "It'll tickle yore innards!"
  • Mountain Dew (1948) — Citrus flavored soda. [7] PepsiCo's original and most signature flavor in the Mountain Dew family.
    • Caffeine-Free Mountain Dew — Non-caffeinated Mountain Dew. Available throughout various parts of the United States and Canada. In Canada it is simply labeled as “Mountain Dew.” (see Dew Fuel for more information)
    • Diet Mountain Dew (1984) — No-calorie Mountain Dew. [8] Formerly known as “Sugar-Free Mountain Dew” until 1986. [9] In 2006, Diet Mountain Dew was reformulated - it is now sweetened with a blend of sucralose, aspartame, and acesulfame potassium. The previous formulation only used aspartame. The new "Tuned Up Taste" formula prompted a now defunct petition to restore the original formula by long-time Diet Mountain Dew drinkers unhappy with the change. Another site,, features an action list and critical commentary on the new formula. This effort's goal was the restoration of the original formula under the original label or under a new "Diet Mountain Dew Classic" (or similar) label.
      • Diet Mountain Dew Fountain — As indicated on the official Mountain Dew website, “Diet Mountain Dew Fountain is a variation of Diet Mountain Dew that uses treated water instead of carbonated water in its formula”. [10] Limited location availability.
      • Caffeine-Free Diet Mountain Dew — No-calorie, non-caffeinated Mountain Dew. Limited location availability. In Canada it is simply labeled as “Diet Mountain Dew.” (see Dew Fuel for more information)
Mountain Dew Baja Blast
Mountain Dew Baja Blast

[edit] Other Mountain Dew flavors

  • Red (1988) — Fruit Mountain Dew. [11] Red was the first Mountain Dew flavor variation. No longer available.
    • Diet Red (1988) — No-calorie fruit Mountain Dew. No longer available.
  • Blue Shock (2001) — Berry-citrus flavored Mountain Dew. [12] Blue Shock failed to sell in the test market, Chicago, and was later released nationwide only in Slurpee form exclusively at 7-Eleven stores. It was there that Blue Shock made one of the most successful Slurpee flavor launches ever. When Blue Shock became unavailable it was rumored by fans at various message boards that PepsiCo had sold the recipe to Faygo and that they were marketing it as "Moon Mist Blue." Blue Shock has since been brought back for a limited time in March of 2007, once again as a Slurpee flavor exclusively at 7-Eleven stores. [13] No longer available.
  • Code Red (2001) — Cherry Mountain Dew. [14] Not the same as the original Mountain Dew Red.
    • Diet Code Red (2002) — No-calorie cherry Mountain Dew. Available in limited areas only.
  • LiveWire (2003) — Orange Mountain Dew. [15] LiveWire was at one time a limited edition flavor for Summer before becoming permanent. Available in limited areas only.
  • Pitch Black (2004) — Grape Mountain Dew. Limited edition flavor for Halloween. No longer available.
  • Darth Dew (2005) — Tangy grape Mountain Dew Slurpee flavor that could be considered as “Pitch Black 1.5”. [17] Was available exclusively at 7-Eleven stores as part of a promotion for the theatrical release of Star Wars Episode III. No longer available.
  • Pitch Black II (2005) — Sour grape Mountain Dew. Limited edition flavor for Halloween. “Sequel” to the original Pitch Black. No longer available.
  • Arctic Burst (2006) — A Mountain Dew Slurpee flavor available exclusively at 7-Eleven stores as part of a promotion for the theatrical release of Superman Returns. The Slurpee is blue in color and said to taste like blueberry. While the official name is "Arctic Burst", as seen on the actual Slurpee machine, [18] it has also been seen mislabeled under the name "Arctic Blast" in some official online advertisements. [19] No longer available.
  • Kryptonite Ice (2006) — A Mountain Dew Slurpee flavor available exclusively at 7-Eleven stores as part of a promotion for the theatrical release of Superman Returns. The Slurpee is green in color and the flavor seems to be tropical, like mango. No longer available.
  • "Game Fuel" - A limited edition Mountain Dew flavor set to release alongside the X-Box 360 game Halo 3 as part of a promotion. [20] Both are due for launch in August of 2007. The color of it will be red, and it will have a citrus-cherry taste. (NOTE: The final name for this product is currently unknown. For now, it shall be labled as "Game Fuel" due to it being advertised as such.)
  • "Clash" - Citrus-blueberry flavored Mountain Dew currently in the test market phase. [21] It has been described as being similar to Pepsi Blue. (NOTE: If this product is officially released the final name for it is currently unknown. For now, it shall be labled as "Clash" due to it being advertised as such.)

[edit] Brand portfolio

  • Mountain Dew AMP Overdrive (2007) — Cherry flavored Mountain Dew AMP. This is AMP's equivalent of Code Red.
  • Dew Fuel (2002–2007) — A caffeinated version of Mountain Dew offered in Canada. [22] Mountain Dew is not caffeinated in Canada due to Health Canada regulations [23] that only allow caffeine in 'dark-coloured' varieties of soft drinks such as cola and root beer. The reason Dew Fuel is allowed to bypass Health Canada regulations and be sold is due to the fact that it is marketed as a natural health product and not as a soft drink. It mainly replaced Canada's (Caffeine-Free) Mountain Dew on store shelves, although many places still sold both drinks. Dew Fuel was originally called “Mountain Dew Energy” until given its present name in 2006. In early 2007, Pepsi-QTG Canada cited that Dew Fuel is out of production. According to emails from Pepsi-QTG Canada's consumer relations, [24] there are currently no plans to reintroduce the product as it did not sell as well as hoped. There is no official announcement on their website, though the Dew Fuel homepage [25] has been taken down. No longer available.
    • Dew Fuel Sugar-Free (2002) - No-calorie Dew Fuel. The caffeinated version of Diet Mountain Dew offered in Canada. Was originally called “Mountain Dew Energy Sugar-Free” until 2006. No longer available.
  • Mountain Dew MDX (2005) — Mountain Dew flavored “Energy Soda.” Was code named “Mountain Dew X” during the beta test phase.
    • Sugar-Free Mountain Dew MDX (2005) — No-calorie Mountain Dew flavored “Energy Soda.”
  • Mountain Dew Sport (1990–1991) — Only test marketed in several states, as a Mountain Dew flavored sports drink. No longer available.
    • Diet Mountain Dew Sport (1990–1991) — Only test marketed in several states, as a no-calorie Mountain Dew flavored sports drink. No longer available.

[edit] Non-Pepsi bottlers

Only two non-Pepsi franchises exist in the United States for the production of Mountain Dew. At the time of Mountain Dew's acquisition by Pepsi, there were 56 franchise agreements, only 16 of which were not held by a Pepsi bottler. The two remaining agreements are permanent; however, the size of their territories are believed to be small enough to make them insignificant to Pepsi. [26]

  • West Jefferson Dr Pepper (WJDP) of West Jefferson, NC. The company does not ship outside its contracted territory, however several Web sites sell the product at a premium price. The premium price can be justified by the fact that WJDP is the last bottler in the U.S. to produce Mountain Dew with cane sugar [27] (instead of High Fructose Corn Syrup, or HFCS). WJDP is notable for producing all their non-diet products with cane sugar, most of which are Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages (formerly Dr Pepper/Seven Up, Inc.) products.
  • RC Cola Bottling of Winchester, Winchester, VA. The company produces Mountain Dew, but uses High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) like all Pepsi bottlers.

[edit] See also

[edit] References

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  23. ^ Canada Food and Drug Regulations (C.R.C., c. 870) Table VIII
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[edit] External links

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