CLAYTON, Mo. -- To commemorate its centennial this year, Straub's Markets here worked with the Coca-Cola Co. to customize a nostalgic, 8-ounce bottle of Coke.
"We had them put our 100th anniversary logo on the bottles," said Trip Straub 3rd, vice president, general buyer, and one of the owners of the four-unit chain that was founded in 1901.
Straub said the little Cokes were good sellers even before the logo was added. Parents like the size for their children, he said, and many customers appreciate the design of the old-style bottle.
Straub's worked with a design group in St. Louis on a 100th anniversary logo, and Coca-Cola representatives found someone in the company's Atlanta headquarters to put the logo on the bottles. "Straub's" is on the opposite side of the bottle from the Cola-Cola Classic logo, and "Fine Grocers Since 1901" appears in fine print above Straub's name. Up around the neck the years "1901-2001" are added.
And, "Coke gave us an allowance so we could put it on special retail," Straub said, so the retailer didn't have to pay extra for the special bottles. "We also came up with some old, nostalgic-looking coolers. We sell them singly and in the coolers, with the old bottle-cap removers.
"Coca-Cola used to be in all-glass bottles, going back to our early days, so it made a lot of sense to use this package, to get our logo on," Straub told SN.
He said he has had calls from collectors and has seen some on the Internet site eBay with the Straub's logo. A few people have purchased 20-case lots.
Straub's Markets' 100th birthday celebration has also included changing the logo on its heavy-gauge, white-and-green plastic bags and on the butcher paper. At a wine and cheese tasting on Nov. 11 at the Webster Groves store, wineglasses bearing the 100-year logo were given away to the first 250 people. "They disappeared in the first two hours," Straub said.