How Prohibition Put the Cocaine in Coca-Cola


I grew up in a country town. It was the sixties and we were all – or so I read in the Daily Mail – off to hell in a handcart because drugs were everywhere.

I’d have been glad to jump into the handcart and bucket off with the rest of my doomed generation, except that as far as I could see, nobody had any drugs at all.

I’d have tried anything. I did smoke banana skins once because I had read they were narcotic. It was a fiasco on all sorts of levels – not least because I never came up with reason for keeping banana skins in the airing cupboard that my mum found at all plausible.

The other piece of secret knowledge was that there was cocaine in Coca Cola and that if you put an aspirin in a bottle of coke, the drug would be released.

I always wondered if it was an urban myth until I came across this piece:

How Prohibition Put the Cocaine in Coca-Cola.

I love the notion that the early cocaine infused formulation was ‘an intellectual beverage’. I bet.

How Prohibition Put the Cocaine in Coca-Cola