By Erin Nudi
Fitzgerald Brothers Beverages of Glens Falls have installed the soda fountains at restaurants; stocked the soft drink coolers at convenience stores and hired people for summer jobs or full-time positions.
The company is a family-owned, sixth-generation Pepsi distribution company in Glens Falls. Although they exclusively bottle and distribute Pepsi, Fitzgerald Bros. got its start distributing various alcoholic beverages beginning in 1857 in Troy.
Until Prohibition was enacted, they even brewed their own beer, Fitzgerald’s Beer and Ale.
In 1960, the company purchased the former Pepsi Bottler on Dix Avenue in Glens Falls, and from 1986 to 2011, distributed all of the Coors brand products to area customers as well.
Today, Fitzgerald Bros. operates out of the same Dix Avenue location and provides Pepsi products and self-service vending to over 950 customers in Warren, Washington, and Saratoga counties.
All customers are within 60 miles of the Glens Falls facility and include schools, hospitals, grocery stores, restaurants, convenience stores, and dozens of other types of businesses.
Fitzgerald Bros.’ connection to the community extends beyond customers. The company is involved in local nonprofit organizations, including Big Brothers Big Sisters, Operation Santa Clause, Glens Falls Kiwanis, Glens Falls YMCA, South Glens Falls Marathon Dance.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Fitzgerald Bros. provided free beverages to a dozen local school districts to support lunch programs, and has provided free beverages to area nursing homes, Glens Falls Hospital, Glens Falls Housing Authority and others.
Fitzgerald Bros. is the second oldest family business in the Capital District. All of the employees live locally and over half have 10 or more years of service with the company (over 600 years total), according to the company.
“I like working outside and being active, and helping a driver helps afford me that opportunity,” said Jonah Gold, a driver helper who has been with Fitzgerald Bros. for three seasons. “Great group of people in an environment where everyone gets along.”
“I have enjoyed my time at Fitzgerald Bros. because it is still a family-owned, family-run business that truly cares about their employees, their customers, and the community around them,” Administrative Assistant Melisa Roberts said. She has been with the company for five years. “I am treated like a valuable asset instead of just a number on a spreadsheet.”
Fitzgerald Bros. stands behind the employees they hire, and they believe in the products they sell, which is part of what’s led the company to be nationally touted by Pepsi-Cola.
Fitzgerald Bros. is recognized as the only independent Pepsi distributor franchise to have four winners of the Ring of Honor Award that was created in 1999.