Coronavirus: Diet Coke supplies could be affected by outbreaks

We’re OK now, but officials at Coca-Cola said if the coronavirus continues to spread, there could be an impact on how much Diet Coke and other low-cal drinks are available.

The sugar alternatives Coke uses in Diet Coke and its other zero-sugar drinks have been delayed, the company said in its annual report released Monday, CNN reported.

But the good news is, the company has started its contingency supply plans to cover the short-term impact.

"However, we may see tighter supplies of some of these ingredients in the longer term should production or export operations in China deteriorate," Coke said in the filing, according to CNN.

One ingredient that could be impacted by the virus is sucralose which is used in some drinks. It is sourced from suppliers in both the US and in China, CNN reported.

Earlier reports said Splenda would be affected, but company officials said in a release that Splenda is made in the US and is not affected by the outbreak.

Other sweeteners used in Coca-Cola include aspartame, saccharin and steviol gylcosides, CNN reported.

Coronavirus is not the only impact on the company's supply chains. Weather and diseases that attack the citrus products the company uses could "result in shortages and higher prices for orange juice and orange juice concentrate" for not only Coca-Cola but the entire industry, the company said in the annual report.

Read the report below:

Coca-Cola Annual Report

Coca-Cola is expected to give investors an update on the impact of coronavirus during its April earnings call, Barron's reported.

The company is taking steps to stop the spread of the illness at its manufacturing plants in China, like providing facemasks, hand sanitizers and installing temperature screenings in its buildings, Barron's reported.

About the Author