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Georgia man claims he found original recipe for Coca-Cola at estate sale

A Georgia man reportedly believes he has found the secret formula to Coca-Cola and he’s hoping to sell the find for as much as $15 million. reports that Cliff Kluge, of Ringgold, recently found the 1943 recipe in a box of letters and papers he recently purchased during a “treasure hunt” at an estate sale with his wife, Arlene. The recipe closely matches the purported original formula for Coca-Cola published online two years ago by NPR, which saw its website crash from all the traffic.

"You don't stumble on things like this very often," Kluge said. "It's a letter, and a formula, and the processes to make it. I think it's a little deeper than having fun; I think it's the recipe for Coca-Cola."

The authentic recipe for the ubiquitous soft drink is contained in a safe at the World of Coca-Cola in Atlanta and has been a highly-kept secret since the 19th century. Coca-Cola officials said in a statement that the “real formula” remains locked away.

"Through the years, many have tried to crack the secret formula, but no one has been able to reproduce the 'real thing,’” the statement read. “The real formula is safely tucked away in a vault at the World of Coca-Cola in Atlanta."

Kluge, however, remains undeterred. After initially asking for $5 million on eBay, he’s now seeking $15 million. There have been no takers thus far, the website reports, although the Georgia man said it’s not about the money.

"It's just excitement," he said. "It's an Easter egg hunt, looking for eggs out there. And when you come up with something like this, it's Christmas."

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