Soft drink naming conventions

Soft drink naming conventions

Soft drinks are called by many names in different places of the world.



Soft drinks are generally known in Ethiopia by the Amharic word "leslassa", meaning literally "smooth". The popular brand names "Koka" (Coke) and "Mirinda" (Orange Soda) are also in common parlance.


In the south east, soft drinks are called "mineral".

South Africa

Soft drinks in South Africa are called "cool drinks" generically, although "lemonade" follows the same conventions as Australia.



In Argentina, carbonated drinks are called "gaseosas" (gassed drinks), or sometimes referred by brand name altogether.The term "soda" is reserved only for carbonated water, which is still very popular in the country. It's common for Argentines to have soda syphons delivered to their homes, which they use to mix with juices or other drinks, according to personal preference.

Popular soft drinks are Coca-Cola and Pepsi, as well as the usual lime-lemon and orange soft drinks available elsewhere. Juices are also popular. A recent trend is the promotion of "agua saborizada" (flavoured water), by both local and international brands.


In Brazil, carbonated drinks are called "refrigerantes" (coolers). Fruit juice is called by juice name in portuguese - Suco. Powder juices can sometimes be called "refrescos" (refreshers).

Along with the regular flavors sold worldwide, Brazil is also notorious for the "guaraná" soft drinks. Guarana is a small fruit found on the amazon forest. The most popular guaraná soft drink is the guaraná antarctica, which has also been exported in small numbers to other countries, including the United States.

The most famous brand though, is, of course, coca-cola and its famous flavours, including the cola drink itself, sprite, fanta, grape fanta, and also kuat, which is a guarana-based soft drink made by coca-cola. Pepsi is also found on any super market and is the second biggest brand. There are also many other smaller brands.


"Pop" is the most commonly used term among English-Canadian speakers to refer to a carbonated soft drink – although "soft drink" itself is widely used, particularly on signage and menus and by Quebec anglophones. "Soda" is used less. "Soda pop" is used by some. In French, a soft drink is referred to as "une boisson gazeuse", or informally as "une liqueur" (likely a shortened form from the seldom-used "liqueur douce"). The use of "liqueur" in this fashion is distinctly Quebec French; in France, "liqueur" refers to a very specific set of aperitif and digestif alcoholic drinks.


Carbonated beverages are generally referred to as "bebidas" (drinks).

Punch drinks made from powdered mixes are popular as well. Popular flavors are orange, apple, pineapple, strawberry, peach and apricot juices, though Coca-Cola and orange soda are popular as well. Other popular drinks are those referred as "néctar", peach and apricot being the most popular flavors.


Soft drinks are called "gaseosa" (gassed drink) in Colombia, generically meaning "drink". Some usage of "refrescos" with similar meaning is reported. "Trago" is used for alcoholic drinks.

Dominican Republic

The term for non-alcoholic carbonated soft drinks is "refresco" in the Dominican Republic, which conveys the refreshing properties associated with a cold frizzy drink. In most cases, "refresco" means a "sweet" soft drink. Other carbonated drinks, like Club Soda, are called "soda amarga" or "refresco amargo" (bitter soda or bitter soft drink, respectively).


In Ecuador, soft drinks are commonly referred as "cola", due to the popularity of the Coca Cola brand.

El Salvador

In El Salvador, soft drinks are called "gaseosa" (gassed drink) or by the brand name.


"Refresco" is often used for carbonated drinks of most types, however more often in signs and menus. "Bebidas", lit. "drinks" is also used in menus, but can refer to alcoholic drinks as well. In speech a more specific word is generally used, such as "coca" or "té", however "agua", lit. "water" can also be used to refer to any non alcoholic, usually cold, drink. At the north part of the country, "soda" is widely used.


Soft drinks are called "gaseosas" in Paraguay. The name "coca" is also common in Paraguay.


In Peru, carbonated drinks are called gaseosas (gassed drinks). The most popular drinks in Peru are Coca-Cola, Pepsi and the national soft drink Inca Kola. Natural fruit juices are also popular.

The national soft drink brand Kola Real change the preuvian market of Soft Drink with low price soft drinks beverages and 3 litres bottles.

United States

"Soft drink" commonly refers to cold, carbonated, non-alcoholic beverages in the United States. Carbonated beverages are regionally known as: [ [ The Great Pop vs. Soda Controversy] ] [ [ Study on American dialects by linguistics professor Bert Vaux] ]

* "Coke", or "cola", in most of the South, including New Mexico, the state of Texas, and much of eastern and southern Oklahoma, regardless of which actual brand it is.
* "Pop" in most of the Midwest, Northwest, and Mountain West and into the western part of the Northeast, including such cities as Chicago, Illinois; Cleveland, Ohio; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Detroit, Michigan; Indianapolis, Indiana; Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota; Erie, Pennsylvania; Rochester, NY; and Buffalo, NY; and as far south as the northern half of Oklahoma. The majority of the states of Iowa and Michigan (including the Upper Peninsula), especially the Metro Detroit area specifically call soft drinks "Pop" (Faygo, a brand of soft drink made in Detroit is an example of this). In the lower Midwest, such as southern Indiana, "soft drink" predominates.
* "Soda" in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic states, the Southwest (California, Nevada, Arizona), Hawaii, parts of Florida (especially South Florida, in the Miami area), and small parts of the Midwest (around St. Louis, Chicago; and Southeast Wisconsin).
* "Tonic" is used all over eastern New England although the usage is being replaced with "soda"; cola drinks are generally referred to as "Coke" (or sometimes "Pepsi") unless another brand is specified.
* "Soda pop" is used by some speakers, especially in the mountain west. "Soda" or "drinks" is common in Idaho and Utah.
* "Drink", "cold drink", and "soda" are locally common in southern Virginia and the Carolinas, spreading from there as far as Louisiana.
* "Soda Water" is used in more rural parts of the US.
* "Cold drink" is the phrase of choice in New Orleans, Louisiana, and most of east Texas as far west as Dallas-Fort Worth (although in the DFW Metroplex the usage is somewhat colloquial).
* At many restaurants in the U.S., the products of only a single major beverage producer, such as The Coca-Cola Company or PepsiCo, are available. While most patrons requesting a "coke" may be truly indifferent as to which cola brand they receive, the careful server will confirm intent with a question like "Is Pepsi ok?" This is also enforced by Coca-Cola so that it can protect its trademark. Similarly, 7 Up or Sprite or Sierra Mist may indicate "whichever" clear, carbonated, citrus-flavoured drink happens to be at hand. The generic uses of these brand names does not affect the local usage of the words "pop" or "soda" to mean "any" carbonated beverage.


The name used in Venezuela, not typical to other Latin American countries, is simply "Refresco". In some parts of Venezuela it is shortened to "Fresco". Brand names are respectively named by their brand.

Asia and Oceania

Australia and New Zealand

"Soft drink" almost always refers to carbonated beverages. In some parts of Australia, the term "lolly water" was synonymous with "soft drink", but it now increasingly refers to bright-coloured alcoholic drinks which some claim are marketed at youth ("lolly water" is also rarely used in reference to wine variant). "Lemonade" is typically used only to refer to highly sweetened transparent carbonated beverages with a flavour similar to Coca-cola's Sprite, or PepsiCo's Sierra Mist. Lemon flavoured soft drinks are commonly referred to either as "lemon squash" or by brand name. In some parts of Australia and New Zealand, soft drink can be also referred to as "fizzy drinks" or "cool drinks". In Australia and New Zealand, a children's soft drink made from a bottled, usually fruit flavoured and brightly coloured sugar syrup concentrate and tap water is known as "cordial".


In China, soft drinks are often called "gas/air water" (zh-sp|s=汽水|p=qì shuǐ) referring to carbonated drinks only. It is far more common to say the actual name of the drink (eg. Coke, bottled tea, etc.) than saying the generic term above.


Soft drinks go by a variety of names including "soft drinks", and most popular among the masses is the term "cold drinks" or "cool drinks", especially in the south of the country. "Soda" in India refers generally to carbonated water and not artificially flavoured, carbonated beverages. One of the most popular is Coca-Cola's Thums Up brand.


Generally, soft drinks in Japan are referred to as simply "juice", or "drink". In contrast to other nations, non-carbonated drinks (mainly canned and bottled coffee and varieties of canned tea) capture the majority of the soft drink market, while the carbonated drink market is smaller. Carbonated drinks are usually referred to specifically as "cider" or "sōda". Officially (on documents and labels), carbonated and non-carbonated beverages are called "carbon drink" ("tansan inryō"; 炭酸飲料), and "cold drink water" ("seiryō inryō-sui"; 清涼飲料水), respectively.Fact|date=September 2008


The term "soft drinks" (also rendered "softdrinks") is restricted to colas and other carbonated drinks.


"Soft drinks" generally refers to carbonated drinks in Singapore, although more they are commonly referred to by the actual product's name. Other names commonly used include 'gassy drink' and 'sweet drinks'.



The Bulgarian name for soft drinks is "газирани напитки" ("gazirani napitki") or simply "газирано" ("gazirano", "something fizzy"). They are also called "безалкохолни напитки" ("bezalkoholni napitki"), meaning non-alcoholic drinks. A colloquial word "сода" ("soda") exists, but it is used to denote soda water.


The Danish name for soft drinks is "sodavand", which directly translated means soda water. The term sodavand is exclusively used for non-alcoholic, carbonated soft drinks like Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Fanta. Also used is the term "læskedrik" (from "læskende"="refreshing/thirst-quenching" and "drik"="drink"), which includes all non-alcoholic soft drinks.


In France, the English loanword "soda" can be used and is generally understood to refer to carbonated drinks. Likewise, the generic term "boisson carbonisée" (lit. "carbonated beverage") is used to refer to these as well. For non-carbonated drinks, the term "boisson aromatizée" (lit "flavored beverage" or "boisson plate" (lit. "flat beverage") can be used.

In practice, generic brand names are used to refer to common varieties of drinks, such as "Coca" for cola and "Fanta" or "Orangina" for orange-flavored sweet carbonated drinks. Unlike in Canada, the term "liqueur" is not used in this context and instead refers to sweet alcoholic drinks.


Soft drinks are called "virvoitusjuoma", i.e. "refreshment drink", in Finland. In everyday speech, the word "limonadi" or one of its colloquial derivations is used (limu(kka), lim(p)s(k)a, limppa(ri)). "Sooda" or "soodavesi", "soda water", refers to carbonated water, alongside "kivennäisvesi", lit. "mineral water", and "vichy".


Soft drinks are known as "Limo" short for "Limonade", the German word for lemonade. Some regions also use "Sprudel" (from "sprudeln"="to be fizzy") or "Brause" (in eastern Germany) for carbonated non-alcoholic drinks. However, "Fruchtschorle" is one of the most popular soft drinks in Germany, but it is never called "Limo" since it contains no added sugar. Additionally, the word "Cola" is used to refer to any dark Coca-Cola-like beverage, regardless of brand.


In Greece, the term "Gazoza" is used to refer to clear lemon-lime soft drinks such as 7 Up or Sprite. This term, however, has become outdated.Today, in everyday speech, sof drinks are referred to as "anapsyktika" (αναψυκτικά), which means "refreshing".


In Hungary, this type of beverages is called "üdítőital" ("refreshing drink"). This term can refer to any drink which is served cold, has a flavor and contains no alcohol or heavy energizer components. Any bottled and flavored or unflavored, carbonated or still mineral water also belongs here but is also referred as "ásványvíz" ("mineral water"). Bottled/packed fruit juices are also named separately as "gyümölcslé" ("fruit juice"). The word "dzsúsz" (pronounced exactly as "juice") is also widely used but means almost exclusively orange juice. Carbonated plain/tap water (bottled or draft) is named "szódavíz" or "szóda" ("soda water"). Well known brands are mentioned by their names but cola drinks are often simply named "kóla", regardless their brand.


Soft drinks are often referred to as "minerals" or "fizzy drinks". Lemonade in Ireland comes in two varieties: red and white. Red lemonade is lemon-flavoured, but has a markedly different taste from conventional lemonade. It is popular both as a drink for kids and as a mixer for spirits.

Also indigenous to Ireland are Cidona, an apple-flavoured soft drink produced by cider brewers, Bulmers, and Tanora, a tangerine-flavoured soft drink produced by Coca-Cola. The latter is mostly sold in Cork. Club Orange is a very popular orange-flavoured drink.


In Italy, any liquid that could be used for human consumption is legally called a "bevanda", i.e., "beverage". This includes water, juices, milkshakes, tea, liquors, etc. Soft drinks are commonly called "bibita" (singular) or "bibite" (plural). By law, a "bibita" is a "bevanda" made for refreshment that contains no alcohol and is made commercially. Bibite are further classified as "gassata" (carbonated) or "non gassata". Soft drink marketing is a big business in Italy and although many brands of "non gassata" drinks like lemonade and orange juice are sold, carbonated drinks such as Coke, Pepsi, Fanta, and Sprite are the most popular, especially among young people.

Just as Italy has a long history and tradition of making alcoholic beverages, many Italian soft drink formulas date back 100 years or more, from the humble "gazzosa" or "gassosa" (soda water) sold by dozens of manufacturers, to Campari Soda, San Pellegrino Bitter, Campari Bitter, Acqua Tonica, Crodino, Cedrata (made of citrum), Gingerino, to local versions of "tamarindo" or "chinotto" drinks. Tamarindo soft drinks are flavored with the fruit of the eastern African Tamarind tree. Tamarind drinks are also popular in Mexico and other Latin American countries, where they're known as aguas frescas. The chinotto is a bitter variant of the common lemon. Chinotto soft drinks are colored with caramel, so at a first sight they could be mistaken for colas, but their flavor is completely different. Chinotto drinks were introduced about 1930 and are still so popular in Italy and in Italian communities worldwide, such as those in Australia and Germany, that the Coca-Cola company now makes a Chinotto drink of its own called "Fantachinotto." Widespread distribution of Maltese chinotto soft drinks, known as Kinnie, also contributed to the popularity of these drinks.

Energy and sport drinks such as Gatorade, Enervit, Isostad or Red Bull are also quite popular. Italian law limits the amount of substances like caffeine in energy drinks for health reasons.


In Malta, soft drinks are called "luminata" (lemonade) or else they use the English word "soft drink". Soft drink marketing is a big business in Malta and although brands of no gas drinks like water such as "Saint Michel", "Aquadot" and orange juice such as "Safari" are sold, carbonated drinks such as Coke, Pepsi, Fanta, 7 Up, Sunkist, Krest, Sprite, and the Maltese soft drink Kinnie are the most popular, especially among young people.

Energy and sport drinks such as Gatorade, Energia, Dark Dog or Red Bull are also quite popular.


In the Dutch language, soft drinks are called "frisdrank" ('fresh drink') or abbreviated as "fris", a word coined in 1956 by advertiser Dick Schiferli. "Limonade" is Dutch for lemonade and "priklimonade" is the same drink only with fizz, also abbreviated as "prik". "Prik" refers to the stinging sensation felt in the mouth due to the presence of the carbonating chemicals.


Carbonated soft drinks in Norway are called "brus", which means "fizz". It is a truncated form of the now obsolete "bruslimonade" ("fizzy lemonade").


Soft drinks are called "napoje gazowane" (nearly same as in Bulgaria), where "gazowane" means sparkling or fizzy and "napoje" means drinks. Soft drinks also mean in Poland non-alcoholic drinks ("napoje bezalkoholowe") like water, juice and coffee.


In Portugal, soft drinks are called "refrigerante", which can be freely translated into "cooler".


Soft drinks are usually called "băuturi răcoritoare", "răcoritoare" ('cooling drinks/coolers'), or just "suc" ('juice'), but are also referred to as "cico" (after an old brand of local soft drink) or "cola". Some claim that this name was made after the popular 'Coca-Cola', but in Romania, before 'Coca-Cola', there was 'Pepsi-Cola' and 'Quick-Cola'.


In Spain soft drinks are called "refrescos", which can be translated like "refreshers" or gaseosas "gassy drinks".It refers to non-alcoholic drinks, and commonly carbonated.


Soft drinks are called "läsk" which comes from "läskande drycker" ("refreshing" or "thirst-quenching drinks") and denotes carbonated non-alcoholic soft drinks. The word "lemonad" has more or less the same use as the English word lemonade, but belongs to a slightly higher level of style than "läsk". In Finland Swedish, "lemonad" is more common and refers to all kinds of carbonated soft drinks, läsk (or läskedryck) is also used. Many people, both Finnish and Swedish speakers, also use the word "limsa" ("limonadi").In Swedish Donald Duck comics there is a word called "läskeblask" which means "thirst-quenching fizz". Non-carbonated non-alcoholic beverages similar to squash or cordial are called "saft".


Soft drinks are called газовані напої (fizzy drinks) in Ukraine, with безалкогольні напої (non-alcoholic drinks) also being a common, if more general, term. This resembles both Bulgarian and Polish usage.

United Kingdom

The term "soft drink", in the United Kingdom, originally applied to carbonated drinks ("pop") and non-carbonated drinks made from concentrates ("squash"), although it now commonly refers to any drink that does not contain alcohol. To further confuse matters, alcopops are often called "alcoholic soft drinks".

The term "pop", once popular as a generic term for soft drinks is now mainly restricted to the north of England, and Wales. The term "fizzy drinks" is also used as a synonym for sweetened carbonated drinks. In the West of Scotland, soft drinks are commonly known as "ginger". Carbonated drinks are also known as "juice" in many locations, including most of the east of Scotland.

In Northern Ireland, "brown lemonade" also exists in addition to normal, "white" lemonade.

Middle East

In Arabic countries soft drinks are usually called either "mashroob ghasi", meaning literally "gas drinks" (مشروبات غازية) for soda, or simply "aseer" (عصير, "juice") for most other soft drinks that are served cool or cold. However, local dialects may differ.


Soda drinks are usually referred to as "kazouza" (كازوزة), or "haga sa'a" which literally means "something cold".


In Iran all Soft Drinks are referred to as "Nooshabeh" (Persian: نوشابه) and are further specified by color or brand name, for example a customer at a restaurant may ask for an "Black Soft Drink" (Persian: نوشابۀ سیاه ) or a Coke.


Soft drinks are called in Hebrew "mashkeh kal" (משקה קל), or "light drink." Carbonated beverages are called technically "mashkeh mugaz" (משקה מוגז), "gassed drink;" and colloquially "mashkeh toseis" (משקה תוסס), which can be translated "effervescent drink."


Soft drinks are called "bottles", "cold drinks" or sometimes "soft drinks" in Pakistan. Red sherbet like "jam-e-shirin" may also be included.


In Turkey, they call "soğuk içecek" which means cold drink and for coke they call "kola" and in some cafes and restaurants if they serve "Pepsi" it is also referring to "kola". It is also common to say "meyve suyu" which means fruit juice. You can also ask for "gazoz" which is made of flavoured soda like "Uludağ"


External Links

* [ "A map of generic names for soft drinks by county (U.S. only)"]

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