Voices: White Christmas

The iconic red can turns white this holiday as Coca-Cola tries to green its brand.

“In a project called Arctic Home, Coke plans to turn 1.4 billion of its soft-drink cans white for the first time in its history, replacing the familiar red with an image of a mother polar bear and two cubs….Coca-Cola is making an initial $2 million donation to the World Wildlife Fund to support polar bear conservation work.”
Deborah Zabarenko
Environment Forum blog,

“Coca-Cola Canada plans to contribute $2 million over the next five years to WWF’s new ‘Last Ice Area’ plan, intended to draw more attention to Arctic areas that are vulnerable to climate change….Coca-Cola will also match Canadian and U.S. consumer donations to WWF made from Nov. 1 to March 15, 2012, up to a maximum of one million dollars.”
Jane George

“We won’t see these cans in Nunavut whereas we have our year-long supply already from the sealift.”
reader comment at

“Each purchase of a white Coca-Cola can supports: false tes­timony on global warming; perpetration of the myth about endangered polar bears…activism to fight the development of affordable coal, oil and natural gas; hypocrites who won’t follow their own recommendations; and expansion of already excessive environmental regulations. Doesn’t it make your heart all fizzy?”
Paul Chesser
Associate Fellow, National Legal and Policy Center

“The Government of Nunavut will raise the polar bear quota in the western Hudson Bay area to 21 from eight, Minister of Environment Dan Shewchuk announced [Oct. 28]….‘The increase is because we have listened to the communities and Inuit knowledge, and more bears are being sighted, more bears in the communities.’”

“We always intended to separate the authentic polar bear from our iconic polar bear, in making sure we were clear this was an effort to support WWF efforts. But as we approached this, sheer good luck and timing prevailed….It was literally a two-sentence paragraph in a 40-page deck from [advertising agency] Leo Burnett—’Coke cans turn white.’ When [we] saw that we were like, ‘This is what makes this big.’”
Pio Schunker
SVP Integrated Marketing, Coca-Cola, via

“Coca-Cola usually does a holiday package design with Santa, but it sounds like they’re giving Santa the year off….So while you’re drinking empty calories, bathing your teeth in high fructose corn syrup and citric acid, and supporting a hugely wealthy global corporation, you’ll also be helping polar bears. Call it even.”
Daryl Lang