When the United States entered World War II, many Americans felt a responsibility to help the war effort in any way they could. Brave soldiers went overseas to fight, and the people at home worked hard to provide those men with precious supplies.
For its part, the carbonated beverage industry supported the war effort through an industry-wide scrap metal collection campaign to help supplement the needed materials to manufacture ships and other needed implements of war. Shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the American Bottlers of Carbonated Beverages' War Activities Committee sent a special bulletin to bottling plants and retailers asking them to take part in the program. The committee set an ambitious goal - collecting 60,000 tons of scrap metal.
Throughout 1942, bottlers around the country gathered all the scrap metal from their plants and sent it on trucks to government processing facilities. ABCB designed a special badge of patriotic cooperation, a sticker that was designed to be fixed on the windshields and bodies of industry trucks:
In October of 1942 the Chairman of the industry's War Salvage Program, John F. Leary, wrote:
"Members of the bottled carbonated beverage industry have done a most commendable job in the salvaging of that most critical of all industrial war materials - metal. We started far in advance of other industries, and even ahead of the official scrap collection programs in most localities... We must give these programs our fullest support and help. So let us keep our shoulders to the wheel."
The War Salvage Program is perhaps one of the greatest examples of the spirit of patriotism and service that the American Beverage Association's member companies have displayed for the past 100 years. We proudly remember this chapter in our history and strive to have the same spirit of cooperation in everything we do today.