Does ouzo contain opium and if so, which brands have the most? If you Google search “Coke Arab rumors” the top result you get is in fact from the Coca Cola company! That’s how seriously they take the problem of misinformation. It has often been quoted recently that this is in fact the wrong type of response, especially in this article from the Economist. The gist of the argument is that repeating the rumor reinforces it and that companies should concentrate on putting out a steady stream of positive news instead.
This of course, based on recent work by Derek Rucker and David Dubois, of the Kellogg School of Management, and Zakary Tormala, of Stanford business school, has an element of truth. However it would also depend on the volume of interest and the reasons the rumors is circulating in the first place. So the initial question of “does ouzo contain opium?” perhaps should be redefined as “why are you asking?” It is more than possible that a number of people are looking for opium in ouzo as a positive thing! Maybe ouzo brands should reinforce the rumors to increase sales!!
The analogy with Coke is not a random one of course. According to most sources, Coca Cola did in fact contain cocaine in earlier versions of the recipe. So maybe Coke and ouzo brands should collaborate on the matter because just imagine what would happen if you mix the (supposed) cocaine in Coke with the (imagined) opium in ouzo!
A more matter of fact analysis is in the page we dedicated to the matter of opium in ouzo here.