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Press Release May 2005



MAWSON’S, an 80-year-old family business, has revived two traditional drinks – dandelion and burdock and cream soda.

The launch of the old-fashioned cordials follows the success of the company’s famous crocks of Sarsaparilla.

Last month, Mawson’s won the public vote in a national competition for the best tasting Sarsaparilla in the UK.

Managing Director Nigel Mawson said: “Lots of people are buying our drinks for nostalgic reasons to give them a taste of their childhood.

“But there’s a whole new generation of young people who love them because they taste so different to the fruit drinks and sugary fizzy pops currently on the market.”

Mawson’s long and colourful history includes running Lancashire temperance bars for 50 years, alternative non-alcoholic drinking bars geared towards the family.

Mawson’s Sarsaparilla is sold in either eye-catching retro stone 500ml crock bottles with a swing-top or stylish 375ml glass bottles. The Dandelion and Burdock and Cream Soda come in 375ml glass bottles or 500ml glass bottles with a swing-top.

All the drinks are made from Grandpa Joe Mawson’s secret recipe book dating back to the founding of the company in 1933.

Mawson’s factory is situated in the Lancashire town of Bacup.

Each product contains natural herbals and fruit extracts and is free from artificial colours, flavourings and sweeteners.

Sarsaparilla is reputed to be good for kidney complaints and rheumatism. It is also regularly consumed by customers of all ages who believe it helps with a range of conditions including eczema, sore throats and allergies.

Some people even take regular orders believing it boosts their testosterone levels.

Dandelion and Burdock helps stimulate digestion and is believed to be a liver and kidney cleanser.

• Mawson’s Traditional Drinks are stocked in more than 300 outlets across the UK, including leading supermarket chain Booths as well independent health food shops, farm shops and delis. The range can also be ordered online at or by calling 01706 874448.
• The 375ml glass bottles sell by mail-order for £4.99, the 500ml glass bottles for £5.99 and the 500ml crocks for £10.


• The Mawson’s story began in 1933 when milkman Joe Mawson moved to Oldham and bought a herbalist’s shop. He was soon brewing 40 gallons a day of non-alcoholic beer in his cellar and serving it to locals in a back room;
• Joe and one of his sons, Joe jnr, devised many different cocktails including one dubbed the “Zombie” – a mixture of raspberry, lime, cream soda and other closely guarded flavours;
• The biggest seller was Sarsaparilla, which was diluted with water, herb beer or, in later years, with soda water – earning the nickname Sass ‘n’ Soda;
• In 1998, the company marked its 65th anniversary by bringing back the herb beer and Sarsaparilla. Five thousand bottles of Sarsaparilla sold out in just eight weeks leading to the nationwide re-launch of the drink;
• Ingredients for Mawson’s drinks are sourced from around the world, including ginger from China, liquorice from Italy and Sarsaparilla from the West Indies;
• Mawson’s Cream Soda is delicious served with a spoonful of ice cream floating on the top. Both Cream Soda and Dandelion and Burdock make refreshing ice lollies in the summer months;
• Temperance Bars sprung up in the 19th Century, partly to provide a non-alcoholic social scene for families and partly to combat the huge drinking problem associated with the poorly educated working classes;
• The company is presently owned and managed by Nigel Mawson, the grandson of the Mawson’s founder Joe.


• For more information, samples or photographs, please call Lucy Mason at Mason Media on 0151 707 4513 or 07903 197402.

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