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Secret Ingredients: The Politics of Coca in US-Peruvian Relations, 1915-65

Paul Gootenberg
Journal of Latin American Studies
Vol. 36, No. 2 (May, 2004), pp. 233-265
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3875615
Page Count: 33
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Secret Ingredients: The Politics of Coca in US-Peruvian Relations, 1915-65
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Abstract

This article explores the hidden politics around so-called 'Merchandise No. 5' a secret formula extract of Peruvian coca-leaf used in the American beverage Coca-Cola since the early twentieth century. It analyses the peculiar early political economy of US cocaine control which by the 1920s lent the Coca-Cola Company (and its associate, Maywood Chemical Co. of New Jersey) special roles in drug diplomacy with Peru. It then follows the paradoxical transnational politics of this coca flow during the era of emerging world restrictions on cocaine and coca (1915-65). Coca-Cola was deeply engaged in drug politics with Peru.

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