Avery’s soda factory in New Britain is known for creating special limited edition sodas based on national events. They’ve poked fun at everything from presidential elections to the government shutdown -- and now the coronavirus.
General manager Rob Metz said they created the soda “Coronavirus Cocktail” to bring some light relief to the outbreak.
“Our feeling is that we live in stressful times and if you can alleviate some of the stress with humor we think it’s a good thing so that’s what we’re here doing,” said Metz.
Metz said there was some hesitation when dealing with a virus outbreak, but customers came to them asking if they were going to release a soda.
Avery’s started with a soft launch Thursday, then Metz said they decided to post the soda on social media Saturday after receiving positive feedback from medical workers.
“I would say about 98 percent of the reaction has been positive,” he said. “There’s some folks a little bit negative think it’s insensitive, but we prefer to focus on the positive people”
“We’re kind of playing it by ear if things get really ugly then we’ll reconsider what we’re doing. For right now as long as there’s a positive attitude about it people want to are still interested in buying it we’ll keep it open. We hope the coronavirus goes away very quickly and we stop selling it.”
Marilyn Stanwicks is a customer of Avery’s. She said her kids were dying to try the soda. She works at a healthcare facility and thought the beverage would be a fun thing to do.
“They’ve released others that have kind of hit home with topics that have been in the news so it was kind of apropos I think that they do this,” said Stanwicks. “But I think it's good because it makes people aware of what’s going on and kind of a fun way to say ‘hey stop look and you know be precautionary about what you’re doing.’”
The bright green, orange-lime flavored soda features a fearsome looking cartoon germ on the label.