One Georgia man named Cliff Kluge claims he’s found the original recipe for Coca-Cola among a box of papers he purchased at an estate sale. Though the authenticity of the 1943 recipe has not been confirmed, Kluge is auctioning the paper off on eBay with a starting price of $5 million and a Buy It Now pricetag of $15 million.
“You don’t stumble on things like this very often,” he tells a local NBC affiliate. “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.”
Coca-Cola denies that this recipe is the same as the one that was developed in the 19th century and is kept safe in a locked bank vault. “Through the years, many have tried to crack the secret formula, but no one has been able to reproduce the ‘real thing,'” the company says in a statement. “The real formula is safely tucked away in a vault at the World of Coca-Cola in Atlanta.”
Experts seem to think that while this is a recipe for a cola drink, it isn’t the Coke secret formula. So far Kluge hasn’t received any offers for the paper, but he is just happy to have found the surprise treasure. “It’s just excitement,” he says. “It’s an Easter egg hunt, looking for eggs out there. And when you come up with something like this, it’s Christmas.”