Coca-Cola Spends $1 Million Rebranding Iced Tea That Sounds Like Vulgar Word for Genitals in Europe

Screenshot: YouTube/Fuze Tea
Screenshot: YouTube/Fuze Tea

Last month, Coca-Cola announced that it was bringing its billion-dollar tea brand, Fuze Tea, to 37 countries in Europe. The only problem is that “fuze” doesn’t mean what they might’ve liked in German-speaking Switzerland.


“Fuz” or “futz” is a “very crude and sexually-connoted word” according to Swiss-German weekly newspaper Handelszeitung. Redditors say it’s closer to the c-word. Coca-Cola reportedly needed to spend around one million Swiss francs, or about a million dollars, to rename the product and redo the packaging for the Swiss-German market.

“We did not want our brand to have the wrong meaning, so we tested the name early last year with focus groups,” Christoph Reitmeir, a marketing director at Coca-Cola, told the paper. “So it became clear: we had to replace the z in Switzerland with an s.”

At least one English-speaking Twitter user was confused:

This hearkens back to the apocryphal (but untrue) story about the Chevy Nova selling poorly in Latin America since its name could be read as “no va,” or “doesn’t go.” Or like how if you’re 10 years old and read “Phuket” on a t-shirt, you might think it says something naughty.

Communicating is hard, and even harder when you have to maintain your #brand in dozens of countries speaking disparate languages. But honestly, I needed this. They should change the American name of Fuze Tea to “AssTea” or something while they’re at it.


[Handelszeitung via Mary H.K. Choi]

Former Gizmodo physics writer and founder of Birdmodo, now a science communicator specializing in quantum computing and birds



Well that’s very ironic because in Mexico “Coca-Cola” has always been kind of a joke since “Cola” also means tail but it can also mean ass or in a more vulgar way, genitals or asshole. Also people who don’t like Coke because of how unhealthy it can be, call it “Caca-cola” or “poop-cola”.

It’s still the most popular soda here and every where but this is really ironic.

Another funny one is the other tech site called “The Verge” which sounds very similar to “verga” (very bad word) which means uhm... Penis