Coke formula claim denied by Coca-Cola

May 14, 2013 (ATLANTA)

Cliff Kluge and his wife, Arlene, recently purchased a box of letters and papers at an estate sale. One of those papers is a cola recipe from 1943.

The Ringgold, Georgia, residents love finding and selling antiques.

"It's a treasure hunt. We go around looking for treasure," said Cliff Kluge. "And apparently we may have found some...I think it's the recipe for Coca-Cola."

The formula for making Coca-Cola, the beverage based out of Atlanta has been a tightly kept secret since the 19th century.

Kluge believes this recipe has clues.

"On the last page of this, on page 83, it says the extractor is the original Coca-Cola formula, that's what I'm basing most of this on," said Kluge. "They had access to the original formula."

Officials at the soft drink giant dismiss the claim, saying the original recipe is locked away.

But Kluge's recipe matches closely with another recipe. Two years ago, NPR found a formula for Coca-Cola and published it online. Their web site crashed from all the traffic.

So what have officials at Coca-Cola told Kluge?

"They told me they'd call me back in 7-10 business days. Well, they haven't contacted me back."

Coke did respond to reporters' calls with their own statement: "Through the years, many have tried to crack the secret formula, but no one has been able to reproduce the 'real thing.' The real formula is safely tucked away in a vault at the world of Coca-Cola in Atlanta."

That hasn't stopped Kluge. He has put the recipe on eBay.

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