January 21, 2022


Sussex Ginger Ale Factory

Sussex Ginger Ale Factory

The Sussex Ginger Ale Factory, located on Pleasant Avenue in Sussex is designated a Local Historic Place for its association with the production of the Sussex Ginger Ale.

In 1895, mineral waters were discovered on Church Avenue by S. H. White. White formed a partnership with G. Armstrong and started the Sussex Mineral Springs Company. Sales improved when carbonation, sugar and flavourings were added to the water. 

Here’s how Sussex Golden Ginger Ale began… Bill Manzer ran a general store in South Devon. After a couple years the Manzers rented the store out to Vernon D. W. Rogers of Fredericton, who partnered with a chemist from Woodstock to form the R & M Beverage Company. 

Sussex Golden Ginger Ale Factory

Eventually Mr. Rogers became the only owner and chemist of the company until he formed a new partnership with Leo John Green also of Fredericton. 

Their beverage or ‘pop,’ was well received by the public and deliveries were made throughout the countryside. When the business out grew this building, the company moved to 467 Union Street in North Devon and became known as Devon-Kist Beverages. 

Devon-Kist Bottle
Photo by Dave & Susan Morell

Vern Rogers sold the formulas to the Sussex Beverage Company who promoted the Lime Rickey, Orange Crush, Cream Soda and Golden Ginger Ale brands, which Rogers had made popular in Central New Brunswick.

Ginger ales generally come in two varieties. Golden ginger ale; which is dark coloured and more strongly flavoured; and dry ginger ale, which is more common today. 

Dry ginger ale was developed during prohibition when ginger ale was used as a mixer for alcoholic beverages which made the stronger flavour of the golden variety undesirable. Dry ginger ale quickly became more popular than golden, and today golden ginger ales like Sussex are an uncommon and usually a regional drink. 

Sussex Golden Ginger Ale Vehicle

People who visit the Maritimes often bring Sussex Ginger Ale back home for friends and relatives who have connections to the Maritime Provinces.

Sussex Ginger Ale bottle

In 1910, the company built this building on Pleasant Avenue to house the business. It is now an apartment building. 

Sussex Ginger Ale Building

In 1911, J. Howard Pearn and G. Percy Bolton formed P & B, a bottling company that was in direct competition with Sussex Mineral Springs Company.

In 1929, the two firms merged to form Sussex Ginger Ale Ltd.

In 1930, renovations took place at this building to double the capacity from 5000 bottles a day to 10,000 bottles. Sussex Golden Ginger Ale, which is darker in colour and more strongly flavoured than dry ginger ale, is still produced today.

The brand has had various owners including Sussex Mineral Spring Co., Sussex Ginger Ale Ltd., Maritime Beverages Ltd., Great Pacific Industries Inc., Canadian 7up, and Crush Canada Inc. Sussex Golden Ginger Ale is now owned by Dr Pepper Snapple Group (formerly Cadbury Beverages Canada Inc.) 

Sussex Ginger Ale bottle

Other soft drinks with the Sussex name have been Sussex Old English Ginger Beer, Sussex Pale Dry Ginger Ale, Sussex Red Oval Ginger Ale, and Sussex Cola.

Devon Remembered by Carol Randall 
Devon-Kist Photo: Dave & Susan Morell 

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9 thoughts on “Sussex Ginger Ale Factory

  1. I’m home visiting family from Alberta and would love to take some cases of can ginger ale back with me. My family have been looking for me as I’m in quarantine but they can’t find any. Do you still make the cans and if so where can I buy it

  2. All we can suggest is check grocery stores. We are a Webb site that has nothing to do with Sussex Golden Ginger Ale.

  3. Hi!
    My name is Creena Messer. I absolutely love your ginger ale and have drank it for most of my life. It was a must when sick…lol Then sadly you stopped selling it in the can…are you ever bringing it back?
    All the best!

  4. Creena,

    We don’t own Sussex Golden Ginger Ale, we post history about NB places and things. You would have to contact their head office to register your complaint. You might try searching Google for more information on the company.

    Larry & Steve

  5. Recently came across a green glass Sussex ginger ale bottle and was wondering what era it came from ? I live in Sussex NB and am the manager of Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore and am currently displaying it and would love some info .
    Thank you

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