Chattanooga-based Pure Sodaworks recently landed a deal that will put its products in all Cracker Barrel stores across the country.
A deal between the natural soda maker and the Southern-themed restaurant chain, which was finalized last Monday, allows Pure Sodaworks to sell their products directly to Cracker Barrel.
The soda company announced the deal during The Company Lab’s pitch event Thursday night.
Pure Sodaworks leaders were able to get their foot in the door through a connection to Cracker Barrel’s beverage buyer. Shortly after, Pure Sodaworks enrolled itself in Co.Lab’s accelerator program, which gave the company the push needed to set up a meeting with Cracker Barrel.
“I took them soda samples, and … they loved the product right then just from looking at it,” Pure Sodaworks co-founder Matt Rogers said. “They didn’t even try it.”
Pure Sodaworks leaders initially had trouble finding a manufacturer who would agree not to use corn syrup to make the sodas but were able to find one manufacturer willing to keep the original recipe.
The sodas will be distributed to each of Cracker Barrel’s 647 stores in 44 states and will hit the shelves Feb. 22.
“It’s huge; it’s a total game changer for us,” Rogers said. “We are one of the first of the micro-batch sodas to get a national account. It’s going to allow us to scale our business to approach other major retailers.”
Alina Hunter-Grah is a contributing writer. She currently attends UTC, where she was previously the news editor of the student newspaper, The University Echo. Alina also worked at CNN during the summer of 2017 and is the former Chattanooga correspondent for 2nd & Church, a literary magazine based out of Nashville. You can reach Alina at [email protected] or on Twitter @alinahuntergrah.