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Coke hopes ginger can restore its fizz

AAP logoAAP 21/10/2016 Trevor Chappell

Don't fancy a Cherry Coke? Vanilla Coke not for you? How about a Ginger Coke?

The new flavour is set to hit the shelves within weeks, as part of Australian bottler Coca-Cola Amatil's efforts to reinvigorate sales in Australia.

A switch by consumers to drinks with less sugar and lower calories means sales of carbonated soft drinks such as Coca-Cola have not been growing as fast as those of bottled water, energy drinks, flavoured milk and iced tea.

Coca-Cola Amatil managing director Alison Watkins describes the new flavour as a cross between regular Coke and ginger beer.

"It's a new twist on Coke, and it's one of a pipeline of what you'll see," Ms Watkins said on Friday.

The company does not expect to sell huge volumes of Ginger Coke, but believes many people will give it a try.

"It keeps adding interest to the category, and that's what's really important. It does taste great by the way," she told AAP.

Ms Watkins also said Coke Life, a naturally sweetened version of Coke, will be relaunched in 2017 with fewer calories.

"Coke Life, when we introduced it last year, contains two-thirds the calories of a regular Coke. The version that we will launch next year will take it down to about 50 per cent of the calories of a regular Coke," she said.

Coke Life accounts for one to two per cent of sales by volume under the Coke trademark.

Briefing investors on Friday, Coca-Cola Amatil said it will double its current cost savings target to $200 million.

The original target of $100 million will be met in 2016, and the company has identified opportunities to save at least another $100 million over the next three years.

Savings are expected to be made in the supply chain, procurement and a restructure of its sales force, which Ms Watkins said may involve job cuts.

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