The first soft drink can be traced as far back as the late 1700s, when Jacob Schweppe perfected his process for manufacturing the world's first carbonated beverage, mineral water.
A jeweler by trade, Jacob Schweppe's interest in science led him to the novel art of infusing water with carbon dioxide. As he experimented, he gave away the bubbly water. Eventually, Schweppe began charging a small fee for the water and thus
J. Schweppe & Company was born.
Working from a Swiss lab in 1783, Schweppe patented his special process for carbonating water. His achievement was exceptional, but getting the carbonation into the water was only half the challenge. Keeping it in was the tricky part. Schweppe's true stroke of genius came from his development of a bottle that could retain the carbonation. This started the soft drink business.
Schweppe and his business partners soon moved from Switzerland to London, where soda water began to be recognized for its refreshing qualities as a thirst quencher and as a mixer.
As the British Empire grew, so did Schweppes. Englishmen, longing for a taste of home, brought Schweppes to distant countries and extended the brand recognition to all corners of the world.
Schweppes continued its growth in the midst of two world wars. By the beginning of World War II, Schweppes Ltd. was firmly established as the leading manufacturer of soft drinks in Great Britain. Following World War II, Schweppes received a great welcome back when 1948 sales volume exceeded pre-war figures.
Schweppes merged with the Cadbury Group, a well-known confectionery company, to form Cadbury Schweppes plc in 1969. With headquarters in London, the company expanded its soft drink and confectionery business internationally.
Today, Schweppes is part of Canada Dry Mott's, a subsidiary of Plano, Texas-based
Dr Pepper Snapple Group, an integrated refreshment beverage business marketing more than 50 beverage brands throughout North America.