‘Lots of Choices. Calories Optional’; Coca-Cola Consolidated Partners With Medical University of South Carolina to Raise Awareness, Promote Health and Wellness

Tue Nov 5, 2013 11:56am EST

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‘Lots of Choices. Calories Optional’; Coca-Cola Consolidated Partners With Medical University of South Carolina to Raise Awareness, Promote Health and Wellness

  • ‘Lots of Choices. Calories Optional’ Consumer Messaging
  • Clear on Calories Transparency
  • ‘Health Disks ‘inform consumers make right choices for their lifestyles
  • Promoting healthy balance and physical activity

As part of Coca-Cola Consolidated’s ongoing commitment to health and wellness, the company is expanding its partnership with South Carolina hospitals to encourage consumers to make beverage choices that fit their lifestyles.

“Coca-Cola Consolidated is excited to have a partnership with South Carolina hospitals to raise awareness and educate consumers around beverage choice and the importance of physical activity,” said Alison Patient, senior director of corporate affairs at Coca-Cola Consolidated. “We are taking proactive steps to promote physical activity and ensure hospital employees, patients and family members can make beverage decisions that fit healthy lifestyles. We are pleased that the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC), the leader in health and wellness in the state agreed to lead the initiative in South Carolina.”

As part of a collaborative beverage strategy, Coca-Cola Consolidated is introducing new messaging on beverage equipment in South Carolina hospitals to inform consumers they have ‘Lots of Choices. Calories Optional.’ In addition to traditional regular and zero-calorie soft drinks, consumers will be able to choose from a wide portfolio of beverage choices, including juices, vitamin-fortified waters, regular and zero-calorie sports drinks, teas and purified water.

Through its Clear on Calories initiative, Coca-Cola Consolidated is providing calorie information on the front of every package. Beverage equipment and dispensers will feature ‘health disks’ informing consumers about zero or low calorie beverage options, and plans are being developed to partner with hospitals to promote nutrition education and physical activity programs for hospital employees.

“We are pleased that Coca-Cola Consolidated is looking for additional ways to educate consumers on healthy beverage decisions, and we are excited about the goals they have in store for South Carolina hospitals,” said Dr. Susan Johnson, Director of Health Promotion at MUSC. “It is important for all consumers, in the health care setting and beyond to understand how each food and beverage they consume fits into a healthy, balanced lifestyle. We don’t want to promote any particular choice but rather educate consumers and provide incentives through access, pricing and marketing to make the healthy choice the easy choice.”

Coca-Cola Consolidated has partnered with MUSC through their participation in the Working Well initiative and other innovative programs to promote healthy and active lifestyles. One such program, the Cooking Well Invitational hosted by the South Carolina Hospital Association, sponsored by Sodexo and in partnership with the Culinary Institute of Charleston and MUSC brought hospital and business wellness professionals together to share strategies on preparing healthy and delicious food in their facilities. The company is exploring other health and wellness partnerships with the hospital and throughout the Palmetto State.

“Obesity is a complex problem with many societal causes,” Patient said. “As a society, we generally eat too much and don’t get enough exercise, thus leading to weight gains that can cause health problems. At Coca-Cola Consolidated, we are dedicated to educating our consumers and offering beverages that fit in their lifestyles. All foods and beverages can be a part of a healthy diet if consumed in moderation and coupled with physical activity. That’s why we offer ‘Lots of Choices—Calories Optional’.”

Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Consolidated (CCBCC) is the nation’s largest independent Coca-Cola bottler. Headquartered in Charlotte, NC, the company’s nearly 7,000 employees make, sell and deliver Coca-Cola products in franchise sales territories across the Southeast. For more information, visit www.CokeConsolidated.com or www.LivePositively.com.

The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) is South Carolina’s only comprehensive academic health science center. Their purpose is to preserve and optimize human life in South Carolina and beyond. MUSC provides an interprofessional environment for learning, discovery, and healing through (1) education of health care professionals and biomedical scientists, (2) research in the health sciences, and (3) provision of comprehensive health care. As a public institution of higher learning, MUSC provides a full range of educational programs in the biomedical sciences and actively engages in community service and outreach. The campus is located on more than 50 acres in the city of Charleston. For more information visit www.muschealth.com.

Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Consolidated
Alison Patient, 704-557-4508
Medical University of South Carolina
Dr. Susan Johnson, 843-792-1245