Archive for November 21st, 2003

21st November
2003

First Published in The New York Sun, November 21, 2003

By Andrew Wolf

   A few weeks ago, the city government declared that Snapple is our town’s official beverage and decreed that only Snapple vending machines should be placed in city public schools. However, an investigation by the city comptroller, William Thompson, suggests that the process to choose our official drink might not have been exactly fair — the rules and parameters appear to have shifted midway through the process. The comptroller further alleges that a key player in the selection — the city’s marketing consultant, Joseph Perello — had a conflict of interest that may have given Snapple the edge. 

    I’ll let Messrs. Bloomberg and Thompson duke this out in the larger arena, but I’m curious about the effect that the deal has had on the schools. I’ve gotten calls and e-mails from a number of teachers and principals complaining about the “Snapple police” coming to their schools. The Snapple folks wasted no time. Within days after the announcement, the Snapple army descended on the schools. In fact, one wonders how there were so many vending machines ready and waiting to be placed so quickly after the deal was made public.  (more…)