PEPSI'S RESPONSE

SOMERS, N.Y. -- It's a brand-new year -- just the right time for a reality check on private-label soft drinks.That's just what Craig Weatherup, president and chief executive officer of Pepsi-Cola Co. here, thinks is coming.For two years or more, Weatherup, along with the rest of the branded soft drink industry, has watched what he called "phase one" of private-label softdrinks unfold as supermarket

SOMERS, N.Y. -- It's a brand-new year -- just the right time for a reality check on private-label soft drinks.

That's just what Craig Weatherup, president and chief executive officer of Pepsi-Cola Co. here, thinks is coming.

For two years or more, Weatherup, along with the rest of the branded soft drink industry, has watched what he called "phase one" of private-label soft

drinks unfold as supermarket chains have reworked their beverage strategies and made changes larg

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