News Briefs

William F. O’Rourke Jr.
, president and chief operating officer at Coca-Cola Bottling Co. in Chicago until 2003, recently died in Northbrook, Ill., after a short illness. O’Rourke began his career as a 7 UP salesman, and prior to joining the Coca-Cola bottling group, he served as president of Chicago’s 7 UP operations.  
Coors Light will be a sponsor of this year’s ING New York Marathon, including promotions at more than 400 bars and restaurants along the race route during and leading up to the marathon. The company will feature a commemorative can to mark the event, to be held Nov. 6, as well as special on-premise materials.
The Special Occuptional Tax on alcohol beverages, which has been suspended until 2008, is about to be repealed for good. The Highway Bill approved by Congress will remove the tax on businesses that make, distribute, sell or deliver alcohol products.
The Carlyle Group, Washington, D.C., is rumored to lead the list of those courting the European beverage division of Cadbury Schweppes, London. Estimates put the potential sale in the range of 1 billion pounds (U.K.).
California is considering dropping restrictions on interstate sales of wine and allowing out-of-state wineries to sell directly to residents. The Supreme Court ruled earlier this year that states could not restrict direct sales for out-of-state wineries while allowing them for in-state businesses.
PepsiCo will change the labels on its Tropicana drinks, removing the words “real fruit juice.” The decision settles a lawsuit filed in New Jersey over the use of the phrase to refer to pear juice concentrate rather than the juices for which the products were named. New labels for Tropicana Peach Papaya and Strawberry Melon will call the drinks “flavored juice drink/from concentrate with other natural flavors.”
Power Trip Beverages Inc. has signed an agreement with Youth Crime Watch of America to fund youth activities. The company will donate a portion of Power Trip proceeds to the YWCA. “This support will provide the stability for some of the key activities that power our movement annually,” said Terry Modglin, chief executive officer of Youth Crime Watch America.
Majestic Distilling Co. has become the exclusive importer for Tortuga Rums from the Cayman Islands. The Tortuga line includes 11 varieties, including five-year-old and 12-year-old premium rums.