Coca-Cola brings Surge soda back after fans' Facebook campaign

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Coca-Cola brings Surge soda back after fans' Facebook campaign
Eric Karkovack laughs next to a "SURGE" cooler, Friday, April 1, 2005, in his Carlisle, Pa., home. Coca-Cola Co.'s Surge blasted into the cola wars in 1997 billed as a "fully loaded citrus soda" to go up against PepsiCo Inc.'s popular Mountain Dew. Surge is now considered the beverage equivalent of an endangered species. Karkovack is working to save Surge. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
The Coca-Cola Co.announced Monday Dec. 16, 1996 in Atlanta, that it will introduce early next year, a greenish colored soft drink called Surge to compete with Pepsico's Mountain Dew. The drink will be marketed toward teens and young adults and will be unveiled with commercials during Super Bowl XXXI. (AP Photo/HO)
This was one of the first energy drink soda's SURGE!
crystal pepsi
Bottles of Crystal Pepsi are seen in a bottling factory in 1992. (AP Photo/Pepsi-Cola)
OK Cola
Coca-Cola's new OK soda, being test marketed, targeting teen consumers w. its understated can design w. world-weary teen face, OK logo & pseudo-Zen saying. (Photo by Ted Thai/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - JANUARY 01: Bottle of Jolt Cola. (Photo by Al Freni/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images)
A bottle of Pepsi's new Josta drink is shown in this photo taken Tuesday, July 15, 1997, in New York. Ancient Indians believed the guarana beans in the new drink contain ``raw, potent power,'' the bottle says and after nearly two years of test-marketing, the No. 2 soft-drink maker is rolling out a national marketing campaign for the caffeine-charged drink. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
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By MORGAN GIORDANO

'90s kids rejoice!

Years of hard campaigning on Facebook by about 130,000 hardcore fans of the discontinued soda Surge has resulted in Coca-Cola bringing back the drink for the first time in 12 years.

The soft drink company first released Surge in 1996 as its answer to the PepsiCo-owned Mountain Dew but pulled it off shelves in 2002. The neon-green cult classic returned Monday but is available only online.

Coca-Cola announced on Monday that they were going to bring Surge back exclusively on Amazon.com, at a cost of $14 for a 12-pack, as a direct result of years of campaigning by hardcore fans.

The SURGE movement started in 2002 by asking their 130,500 fans 'where was the last place you had SURGE?' And by non-stop posting of Surge memorabilia found at flea markets and other places.

Websites like SaveSURGE.org and SURGE movement on Facebook also tracked appearances of Surge in pop culture and in the media.

Surge fanatics' pleas to get their sugary citrus fix did not fall on deaf ears.

An official statement released by Coca-Cola said that the decision was driven "thanks, in part, to a passionate and persistent community of brand loyalists who have been lobbying The Coca-Cola Company to bring back their favorite drink over the last few years."

A branded Twitter account was also created for fans.

Amazon sold out within the first hour of releasing them online. The online retailer re-stocked and warned customers it might be a few days to receive their products, but again sold out several hours later.

Unfortunately, for those abroad, Amazon will only ship Surge in the United States. But Norwegians were quick to point out they never lost Surge. Coca-Cola began producing a drink called Urge in Norway, Denmark, Sweden and France a year preceding the release of Surge in the states.

Urge served as the inspiration for the American brand but it also was removed from nearly every market. Only Norway continued to sell 0.5 L bottles and after a successful Facebook campaign, Urge re-launched 1.5L bottles in 2008.

A Coca-Cola official also admitted the re-launch of Surge will serve as a pilot program for other throwback soft drinks.

"If expectations are met, this may be only the first of a variety of efforts we explore to launch niche products through e-commerce relationships," spokesperson Wendy Clark said in a press release announcing the Surge's resurrection. "This will be a great learning experience for us and a refreshing opportunity for fans."

OK Soda and Cherry Vanilla Coca-Cola fans may eventually get their day in the sun, but PepsiCo has not announced a Crystal Pepsi comeback.

Coca-Cola Bringing Back Surge

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