According to ScienceABC, back in 2004, scientists conducted an experiment as part of a neuromarketing study to find out which tasted better: Coca-Cola or Pepsi.
In the study, published in the journal Neuron, scientists asked 67 volunteers to try the two drinks. Participants' brain activity was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI).
When volunteers did not know which drink they were drinking, preference averaged 50%. However, when participants were told the name of the drink, the preference also changed. As a result, people claimed that Coca-Cola tasted better. Why?
When participants didn't know the names of the drinks, fMRI recorded the activity of the pleasure center, which is located in the front of the brain and is known as the ventromedial prefrontal cortex. This area of the brain is particularly sensitive to foods that most people like (like sugary carbonated drinks).
However, when volunteers were told the name of the drink, the fMRI began to record activity in the part of the brain responsible for emotion and perception. Coca-Cola elicited more emotional reactions in people than did Pepsi.
Researchers believe that Coca-Cola's highly successful advertising campaign resulted in people becoming more attached to the brand and forming a strong emotional bond with it. And it's not about the taste of the drinks.In general, Coca-Cola and Pepsi are not very different from each other. Their composition is similar, except for some ingredients. Pepsi contains citric acid and more sugar. The citric acid gives the drink a citrusy taste that some consumers like and others may hate. Coca-Cola, on the other hand, contains more sodium, which makes the drink taste more vanilla and milder.