When Bondurant, Mixson & Elmore sued The Coca-Cola Co. in 1981, the soft-drinkmaker eventually had to defy court orders to preserve the secrecy of Coca-Cola’srecipe.

Guardians of the Coke formula won’t face that sticky dilemma with Bondurant,Mixson’s current suit, which seems far more serious than the 1981 case,a bottlers’ dispute over the price of Coke syrup.