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Codd-neck bottles were first patented in 1870 by British soft drink maker Hiram Codd. The unusual bottle design achieves a seal by utilizing the soda’s carbon dioxide gas to press a glass marble up against a rubber washer directly under the lip of the opening (the bottles are filled upside down). The thirsty consumer breaks the seal by pressing down on the marble and releasing some of the carbon dioxide.

The bottle style was popular in Canada, India, and Australia, but over time it has declined in popularity. Today these bottles can still be found in Japan and India, and Lindsay at Ouno Design has a post up about Codd-neck bottles, including images from her recent trip to India. Lindsay writes:

I only saw these bottles rarely, and only in old-fashioned soda carts like this one. As I said, on my last trip these bottles were everywhere. Because the soda water was sterilized, it was a safe drink for foreigners and I must have drunk hundreds of bottles of it, while my boyfriend drank the sweet stuff, mostly orange. There were no plastic water bottles anywhere to be seen.

By the way, these citrus soda carts are a brilliant idea. Delicious fresh lemon or lime sodas are made by mixing the plain soda water with freshly squeezed local citrus and local cane sugar, which is far better for you than our current sweeteners in North America. (High fructose corn syrup, which is unnatural, molecularly different and recently incontrovertibly linked to obesity, hasn’t been forced on India yet by the aggressive American corn industry.) Handmade lemon soda drink is far better than our soda pop here, and healthier too as long as the bottles are fully dried before refilling. Lastly it’s far better for the environment than anything we’re doing now. Plastic! Re-melting aluminum! Melting down glass! Argh.

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Laura Cochrane

I’m an editor at MAKE and CRAFT. I like hiking, biking, and etymology.


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Comments

  1. Xenix says:

    Cool bottles. Why the non-scientific HFCS nonsense?

    1. Gareth Branwyn says:

      That’s part of the quote from the page we linked to, not our words.

      And yes, cool bottles. Thanks for the post, Laura!

      1. EnTerr says:

        So why did you have to quote the bullshitty part – remove it! The whole last paragraph is a rant. HFCS is as bad for your body as honey (98% identical). And about as bad as cane sugar, sugar beet sugar, bread, rice, pasta and other starches – abuse of any carbohydrates ultimately leads to metabolic syndrome.

    2. Kelly says:

      Yeah, I could have also done without the shining example of science education fail and fearmongering rants.

  2. Ramuné (Japanese pronunciation of lemonade) comes in Codd-Neck bottles and can be found in most major metropolitan areas if you keep looking.

  3. Darwyn says:

    Sodas in brazil are also Cain suger based, coke is so much better with Cain suger

    1. EnTerr says:

      And what is your ptoblem with Able?

  4. engineerzero says:

    You can find these bottles in the Japan section of your local imports store. Soft drink included with every purchase.!

  5. Lindsay says:

    Thanks for linking to my post, Make! I am really curious whether it would be economical to resurrect these bottles and this system of re-use (washing and refilling). Does anyone know? Is it a sustainable model? As a kid in Vancouver we had something called the Pop Shoppe which did actually reuse and refill bottles – you took a large flat back of empty bottles back and they refilled them. I can actually also remember when Coke bottles were reused and the glass was almost an opaque white from use. You could still see this in Mexico recently.

    Some have mentioned the Japanese Ramune bottles. They’re neat but sadly they are not reused – it’s more of a marketing gimmick. I’m really interested in the refilling. I guess I’m also in love with the fact that these bottles have no branding/advertising on them – something I didn’t mention in my post but that occurred to me after I read yours.

    As for the commenter about High Fructose Corn Syrup, I suppose he thinks the scientists at Princeton are unscientific? :)
    http://www.princeton.edu/main/news/archive/S26/91/22K07/

    1. Xenix says:

      Actually, yeah, in that case they are. One guy at Princeton with atypical results based on a poor experiment design and a PR department doesn’t = science. You can drink whatever you want (I don’t drink sugared soda of any variety as a matter of taste) but you shouldn’t make unfounded health claims and saying anything in science is “incontrovertible” based on any single study is silly and displays your bias.

    2. EnTerr says:

      The link you provide is just a PR blurb. The exact article is Miriam E. Bocarsly, Elyse S. Powell, Nicole M. Avena, Bartley G. Hoebel, High-fructose corn syrup causes characteristics of obesity in rats: Increased body weight, body fat and triglyceride levels, Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior, Volume 97, Issue 1, November 2010, Pages 101-106, ISSN 0091-3057, 10.1016/j.pbb.2010.02.012.
      (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0091305710000614)
      And reading their results there are things that make me wonder: for example, in the short-term (8wks) experiment – why only the males on 12hr HFCS regimen gained weight and the ones with 24hr access to HFCS did not? In the long-term (7mo) experiment, why is there no difference in weight gain between 12hr sugar and 12hr HFCS females? Science is not as clear-cut as lay(wo)men get it to be.

  6. Doug says:

    So, this being make, anyone have a method to re-use Codd bottles? Say for home brewing folks? Would make a nice change from Grolsh bottles.

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