If you’re looking for a Jolt, Jolt Cola was totally the option to give it to you. This soda drink was known for having a LOT of caffeine, which was sure to work when you really needed that extra boost. It was an energy drink, with a soda style ultimately.
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Keep reading to learn more about it!
Jolt Cola History
If you’re not familiar with Jolt Cola, it had its ups and downs. In fact, there was a period of several years where it wasn’t available anywhere because the company had declared bankruptcy. But then, the drink made a limited comeback. If you’re lucky, you can still find it in some areas.
Jolt Cola was thought of as the original energy drink. It is a soda, which is why the name has cola in it, but it was designed for energy and stimulation, much like the energy drinks we know of today.
Jolt Cola first came out in 1985, which was almost 40 years ago. It was loaded with sugar like traditional soda, but it had even more caffeine. The slogan said it was twice the caffeine, so you’re looking at a highly caffeinated beverage overall. The cola was strategically marketed to the same population that might normally want energy drinks, like students and young people in the workforce.
Originally, when the soda was brought to market, it was made by The Jolt Company, Inc. They always made a play on high levels of caffeine to make sales. As we mentioned earlier, the slogans even played on this. Their very first slogan said, “All the sugar, twice the caffeine.” They actually used that specific slogan for more than 20 years with the brand.
When they did change it, all they did was take away the all the sugar caption, making the new slogan, “Twice the caffeine.”
The company caught some flak for just how much sugar was in there, so in 1987 they created another version with fewer calories. They sweetened this one with things like NutraSweet to cut back on the sugar content. Through the years, they also made other flavors, which we will cover more later in this guide.
What was always known as Jolt Cola eventually transitioned into Jolt Energy instead. They slightly revamped the branding and the titling to this approach, but they used the same flavors and design as before. At that time, they also used unique packaging, which was battery bottles. The bottles looked like AA batteries, even with similar painting and designs on them. The idea was it gives you energy, much like batteries supply energy.
Around 2008, they started reaching financial difficulties. The founder of The Jolt Company sold majority interest to a company known as Emigrant Capital. Not much later, they removed Mr. Rapp as the CEO of the company. Shortly after that, in mid 2009, they declared bankruptcy.
It was at that point that Jolt Cola, or Jolt Energy, was no more. Or so it seemed anyways. C.J. Rapp actually fought the bankruptcy declaration, suing Emigrant Capital, as well as many other shareholders. The bankruptcy filing was overturned and dismissed. Mr. Rapp spent 8 years in litigation through the legal battles against the others. After 8 long years, they reached some sort of settlement, but the details were never made public.
Jolt Cola remained unavailable through those years. It wasn’t found in stores and wasn’t in production. However, they surprised the world in 2017, announcing the return of Jolt Cola and Jolt Energy Drinks. The plan with the return would be to sell them in Dollar General stores.
While there has never been an official announcement of ceasing production, it appears that they either have very limited production, or that the company has discontinued products again. If you look at their social media, it went silent back in 2019. In 2019, customers also took note that you can no longer find the drink at most Dollar General stores.
What happened for sure remains a mystery, and it is questionable whether or not they are still in operations.
The Jolt Energy line can still be found in some areas, though, thanks to the licensing agreements from 2006. The company that produces Jolt Energy also produces energy mints and bubble gum that fall under the Jolt name. Perhaps it’s just a matter of looking elsewhere for the same sort of product.
When Was Jolt Cola Invented?
Jolt Cola first came out in 1985. It was one of the first energy drinks out there that resembled cola but had double the caffeine as normal cola drinks do. It still had all the sugar and calories, but significantly more caffeine.
They marketed to young professionals, as well as college students, night shift workers, and similar industries in order to find their fandom. And it seemed to work just fine. They held strong for a lot of years while the original CEO was still in the picture.
The Jolt Cola was always their initial innovation, but they found ways to bring out new and exciting things too. Details like the battery bottle, special packaging, and even allowing licensing to another business, are what brought them where they are today.
While Jolt Cola doesn’t seem to be around anymore, you can find Jolt Energy products, and those are the same thing.
Who Owns Jolt Cola?
This is where the stories get confusing. You see, the guise of The Jolt Company actually went bankrupt. While those bankruptcy proceedings were overturned and dismissed, the company is no longer in production for Jolt Cola.
Ownership was at one time transferred to Emigrant Capital, and several individual shareholders too. However, when they chose to declare bankruptcy and oust the CEO, Mr. Rapp wasn’t having it. He knew the gold mine that Jolt Cola could be, and he wasn’t going to let it go that easily.
This led to an 8-year lawsuit and litigation process. During that timeframe, there was no Jolt Cola. When that ended, The Jolt Company was back in business, with C.J. Rapp at the helm. They brought it back to market. However, it seems the damage was done.
While there are no official reports of stopping production, it seems as though this company isn’t producing or distributing the original Jolt Cola anymore.
That being said, Jolt Energy is still out there. This titling is licensed to Gumrunners, Inc. and they create Jolt Energy drinks, as well as some other products. While it’s not officially Jolt Cola, it’s still the same thing and a great alternative to get your fix.
How Did Jolt Cola Get its Name?
The name behind Jolt Cola is absolutely what you would think when you hear the name jolt. This was a highly caffeinated beverage, designed to be used as an energy drink. It quite literally gave the drinker a jolt of energy, which is where the name comes in!
Jolt Cola Logo
Jolt Cola Flavors
The original Jolt Cola is a standard cola flavor. That was always their prominent item, and what they made their name from. They did add some more flavors later on, and had some great options.
These are those additional Jolt Cola flavor options.
- Jolt 25 (low calorie option)
- Cherry Bomb
- Citrus Climax
- Orange Blast
- White Lightning (which was really grape)
- Red Eye
- Electric Blue
Perhaps you remember the Jolt Cola Line and even had your own favorite.
On top of that, Jolt Energy also had different flavors. If you’re looking for the current options, you need to look for Jolt Energy. Anything you find on the market today will likely be Jolt Energy. They also have Jolt chewing gum and mints from this same producer.
These are the Jolt Energy flavors we know of.
- Power Cola
- Orange Burst
- Wild Grape
- Blue Bolt (blue raspberry flavor)
- Ultra and Silver
- Cherry Bomb
- Blue Zero Carb
Jolt Cola Ingredients
- Carbonated Water
- Sugar and/or High Fructose Corn Syrup
- Caramel Color
- Phosphoric Acid
- Citric Acid and Natural Flavor
Jolt Cola Nutrition
|Serving Size:||8 fl. oz.||% Daily Value*|
|Amount Per Serving|
|Calories from Fat||0|
- Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000-calorie diet.
Pictures of Jolt Cola
Whether you remember the original Jolt Cola, or you’re looking for the same fix with a different name, you have options. While Jolt Cola is no longer in production from what we could find, you can find the Jolt Energy products in some areas.
You can definitely get a jolt of energy when you drink some of these highly-caffeinated delights.
Krysta Wood is a freelance writer that loves to bring a story to life. She is a candy fanatic that likes to try different types of candy and learn more about their histories.
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