Wednesday, May 11, 2016

North Carolina's Cheerwine-- Part 1: World War I Sugar Shortages

From the Encyclopedia of North Carolina "Cheerwine: by Eileen McGrath.

In 1913, L.D. Peeler and several other investors in Salisbury purchased stock in the Kentucky-based Mint-Cola Bottling Company, and Peeler started the local bottling franchise of the company.  When the parent company went bankrupt in 1917, the Salisbury investors purchased their local branch and renamed it the Carolina beverage Corporation.

In the same year, in response to a sugar shortage during World War I, Peeler sought ways to make his cola drink with less sugar.  After experimenting with different formulas, he added wild cherry flavoring to a cola to create Cheerwine.  The name comes from the drink's cherry flavor and burgundy wine color.


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