Coca-Cola is back on the menu


Coke will continue its 14 year monopoly on campus

Devin R. Heroux

It’s a debate that’s been going on for years, two sides locked in eternal battle, steadfast, resolute.

Which beverage tastes better: Coca-Cola or Pepsi?

According to a University of Regina committee, Coca-Cola products are what the school wants served on this Campus.

Today, the university announced a five-year contract renewal of the refreshment juggernaut beginning at the end of the month.

The recent announcement of this exclusive contract means the 14-year reign of Coke products at the U of R will continue.

“At the end of the day, there definitely was a difference between Coke and Pepsi,” said Jim Woytuik, director of supply management at the U of R.

This exclusive beverage contract means Coke products must be sold at university-controlled locations exclusively, including the more than 65 vending machines on campus.

The process of finding a beverage supplier started Dec. 9, when the university prepared and issued a request for proposal for beverage services open to all beverage providers. Three parties came forward with competitive proposals: Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and Superior Vending.
Part of the process was to provide the campus with a beverage service that would address the varied needs and concerns of students. This included sustainability, choice both in brand and healthier products, and the ability to work as partners in the best interests of the university and community.

“People might get the impression that it’s all about the money,” Woytuik said. “If we brought a contract in that was all about the money, but the service was no good, obviously we would be shooting ourselves in the foot. It’s not all about the money.”

The revised contract, however, allows the federated colleges and the First Nations of University of Canada (FNUniv) to seek a better beverage deal. Places like the Owl, operated by URSU, will be looking for a better deal over the next couple of months.

“The university negotiated a deal with Coke and they gave us the option to opt-into it,” said Mike Staines, URSU general manager. “We have to basically take the terms of that and compare it to Pepsi and decide from there. It could change if Pepsi comes up with a better deal.”
But Staines is quick to admit he doesn’t believe students taste the difference.

“I don’t know that people really care that much differently between Pepsi and Coke,” he said.

A decision on what will be in the glasses of students drinking at the Owl will be reached in six weeks.

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