Did you think it would come to this? Now we have beverage companies competing for the right to claim that they are the biggest "zero." Who knew it would become such a hallmark?

Cadbury Schweppes (NYSE:CSG) subsidiary Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages dispatched a press release last week taking aim at Coca-Cola's (NYSE:KO) use of the word "zero." Last September, I wrote an article about Coca-Cola's decision to add the word to Diet Sprite -- hence, Diet Sprite Zero. Nowadays we have Coca-Cola Zero as well. To recap, the zero is supposed to make you think the drink is healthy for you -- no carbohydrates, no calories, and in the case of Diet Sprite Zero, no caffeine.

Well, Cadbury Schweppes wants people to know that its Diet Rite product is the biggest zero of them all. According to the company, Diet Rite has no calories, no carbohydrates, no caffeine, and no sodium (I wonder if this beverage has any drinkers -- just kidding, Cadbury Schweppes). To do this, the powers that be felt that a new packaging paradigm was in order, so the phrase "Pure Zero" will be added to the containers as a sort of tagline.

See, it goes beyond just mere zero . it's pure zero. I guess there's nothing, and then there's a special kind of nothing that has less than the former state of nothing. Get what I mean? This is becoming very existential.

Actually, I'm just having a Foolish time here. In essence, Cadbury Schweppes has come up with an interesting marketing scheme that, while easy to poke fun at, is serious business. The company has to fight every day with not only the big cup from Atlanta, but also beverage maker/snack food Goliath PepsiCo (NYSE:PEP). If it's worth Cadbury Schweppes' while to fight zero with zero, then it has to do what it has to do. Pointing out, for instance, that Diet Rite has no sodium while the Coca-Cola Zero product does would be useful, I suppose. Heck, this company is ready to send you to space to get on your good side.

While zero is good for diet drinks, it most certainly is not for shareholder value. You want the quantities to be as big as possible in this case, and I wish Cadbury Schweppes the best of luck in generating returns on its marketing investment. I own shares in Coca-Cola, however, so I suppose I don't wish the competition final victory -- and I have to say, the fact that it's introducing this "pure zero" concept probably indicates that my company has hit on a successful promotional trend (at least for now). Cadbury Schweppes has been doing well in the war for cola and confectionary mindshare, as Fool Rich Duprey found out in his earnings coverage. Perhaps, in ironic fashion, the closer this company gets to zero, the higher its shares will rise.

These Foolish Takes have more than zero value:

If all of this isn't sweet enough, check out the Fool's Cadbury Schweppes discussion board .

Fool contributor Steven Mallas owns shares of Coca-Cola, which is a Motley Fool Inside Value pick. He also wonders whether he'll use the word "zero" so many times in one article ever again. The Fool has a disclosure policy .