The Cadbury-Schweppes subsidiary Snapple Beverage Group has signed a deal to make it the official drink of New York City.

The US$166m move will see Snapple as the exclusive provider of drinks in the city's 1200 schools and will also see the brand being sold in city facilities, including its parks and public services buildings.

As part of the deal Snapple will spend US$60m on marketing and promoting New York over the next five years.

Partnerships between schools and soft drinks companies are not uncommon in the US, however this is the first time that a deal has been with an entire city authority.

The move is bound to cause concern as there is growing unease with the association of schools and sugary soft drinks and New York has more public schools than anywhere else in the US.

However, Snapple is planning to introduce a range of 100% fruit juice drinks to meet nutritional guidelines set out by New York authorities. The company hopes this will head off similar criticism.