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Backlash from Super Bowl Ad Continues for A-B InBev

by Ryan Hudak on Feb 13, 2015 in Beer
Backlash from Super Bowl Ad Continues for A-B InBev
During the Super Bowl, AB InBev aired the now-infamous anti-craft beer commercial about brewing “the hard way.” As it turns out, the 3,000+ craft breweries around the country—including the one InBev had just purchased—and their innumerable fans and supporters didn’t take too kindly to the commercial’s misguided jabs and inaccuracies.

The day after the ad first aired, Paste Magazine did a pretty in-depth and scathing takedown, with my favorite point showing the hypocrisy of the ad: InBev specifically calls out peach pumpkin ales, not realizing—or not caring—that the latest craft brewery they gobbled up (Elysian) brews a beer in exactly that style. The best part being that, in a later attempt to backpedal, the Budweiser VP, Brian Perkins, called it a “fabricated, ludicrous flavor combination.” Open mouth, insert foot.

The commercial has spawned two excellent parodies, with the more serious-minded version by HopStories, touting the variety of flavors of craft beer over “your one”—clearly aimed at Budweiser. The second, an excellently not-so-serious version by Ninkasi Brewing, which takes down pretty much every premise put forth in the Budweiser commercial.

Despite the further backpedaling by Budweiser saying the commercial wasn’t anti-craft, but more pro-Bud, the winners in all of this may yet be the craft brewers. Apparently InBev didn’t realize just how many friends craft beer has in the US political system, and the ad has reinvigorated attempts at passing the Small BREW Act, legislation which aims to drop the tax rate from $7.00 to $3.50 on a brewery’s first 60,000 barrels, and then drop it $2.00 on anything from 60,001 barrels to 2 million barrels. Anyone producing 6 million barrels or more, however, won’t see any benefit.

This change in legislation is probably the only way for anyone to see any benefit from the commercial, other than Budweiser being talked about by craft beer fans far more than is normal. On the strength of the commercial alone, the people who are outraged by it probably don’t drink Budweiser anyway, and anyone who agrees with the commercial and it’s outlandish claims probably won’t be reaching for a craft beer any time soon. 

Photo via YouTube


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