Brendan and Benjamin Cavanagh from Cook's Soft drinks, former McMahon's syrup maker Zane Sinnamon and Peter McMahon. Cartons of the soft drink are being sold to raise money for Ipswich Hospice. Photo: Rob Williams.
Brendan and Benjamin Cavanagh from Cook's Soft drinks, former McMahon's syrup maker Zane Sinnamon and Peter McMahon. Cartons of the soft drink are being sold to raise money for Ipswich Hospice. Photo: Rob Williams.

Fizzy flavours reborn in hospice fundraiser

A TINY taste of Ipswich's manufacturing past has been revived in the name of raising funds for one of the city's most important organisations.

Though it has been nearly 30 years since McMahon's soft drinks rolled off the production line in Ipswich, many residents still hold vivid memories of creations like the fabled NE Thing, or just good old Sarsaparilla.

Peter McMahon with a bottle of N-E-Thing? Cartons of McMahons soft drink is being sold to raise money for Ipswich Hospice.
Peter McMahon with a bottle of N-E-Thing? Cartons of McMahons soft drink is being sold to raise money for Ipswich Hospice.

It was through some social media reminiscing that Pittsworth softdrink manufacturer Brendan Cavanagh of Cooks Soft Drinks got into contact with Peter McMahon to see if he wanted to recreate the magic of decades past.

Mr McMahon, who is the son of soft drink company founder Frank and also a board member of Ipswich Hospice, decided a greater good could be served by saying yes to Mr Cavanagh's offer.

Pittsworth and Ipswich have joined forces to recreate two famous McMahon's soft drink flavours, with 65 pe cent of proceeds made from the sale to go to Ipswich Hospice Care.

"I have been asked so many times if we would ever go back into bottling just to produce these two favourites and quite frankly I never thought we would," Mr McMahon said.

"The idea came up a few months ago as we were brainstorming ways we could raise funds for the Ipswich Hospice and now the idea has become a reality.

"There has already been enormous interest from Ipswichians in this limited run of soft drinks."

Mr McMahon said the Hospice Facebook page already had 2000 hits from people interested in the relaunch.

Cooks has manufactured 140 24x300mL cartons of NE Thing and 125 cartons of Sars, with each carton to go for $100 through a limited online sale.

Cartons can be ordered online at ipswichhospice.org.au/shop. Pre-purchased cartons will be available for collection from the Ipswich Swim Factory at Martin Street, Woodend.

 

 

Surviving war, floods

MCMAHON'S Soft Drinks was started by Frank McMahon in 1934 in the Martin St factory currently occupied by son Peter's swim school.

Though WWII initially hindered the business, the Americans saw the value in the business and helped supply ingredients.

The 1974 floods brought about more change, with the McMahons relocating to Wulkuraka. The last bottles rolled off the production line in 1991.



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