Beverage Bites: news up to april 30, 2015

Bud Light’s bottles backfire, Stella Artois and Ascot, and more beverage bites

By Rachel Arthur contact

- Last updated on GMT

Stella Artois announces Ascot Racecourse sponsorship deal
Stella Artois announces Ascot Racecourse sponsorship deal

Related tags: Stella artois, Soft drinks, Coca-cola, Alcoholic beverage, Drink, South korea

This week Bud Light’s marketing campaign attracted plenty of criticism, while South Korea considered banning young celebrities from alcohol ads. Meanwhile, Stella Artois’ sponsorships are galloping ahead… read on for more nuggets of news in our Beverage Bites feature.

Young celebrities could be banned from alcohol ads

South Korea may ban young celebrities from advertising alcohol, with concerns that citizens are drinking more than ever before.

A bill – which seeks to restrict people under 25 from appearing in alcohol ads – has passed a key committee vote, reports the BBC. This means it will become law if approved by the National Assembly.

In South Korea, locals drink 13.7 shots of liquor a week – twice as much as drinkers in Russia. 65% of women in their 20s drink regularly, with one-in-ten calling themselves heavy drinkers.

Bud Light apologizes

Anheuser-Busch has apologized for a message printed on its Bud Light bottles, and says it has taken immediate action to stop printing the slogan.

The message promoted the beverage as ‘The perfect beer for removing ‘no’ from your vocabulary for the night. # UpForWhatever.’

Photographs of the bottles and the ill-fated slogan went viral this week as Americans complained about the message, gathering further attention because of national debate about college rape.

A statement from Alexander Lambrecht, vice president, Bud Light, said, It’s clear that this particular message missed the mark, and we regret it. We would never condone disrespectful or irresponsible behavior.”​ 

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Complaints about Bud Light's slogan went viral earlier this week

People on the move

Peter Harding

The British Soft Drinks Association has announced its new president as Peter Harding (chief operating officer of Lucozade Ribena Suntory).

Harding, who was previously vice president for BSDA, takes over from Dave Wallwork. Leendert den Hollander (vice president and general manager of Coca-Cola Enterprises GB) becomes the new vice president.

Meanwhile, RG Brands has appointed Murray Harris (former Britvic Soft Drinks UK general manager) to plan and lead the company’s expansion in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Russia.

RG Brands is a food and beverage company based in Kazakhstan, producing juice, nectar, soft drinks, milk, tea, water, energy drinks and carbonated soft drinks. It is also the exclusive bottler for Pepsi and Lipton Iced Tea in Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.

Stella Artois sponsors Ascot Racecourse

Premium beer and cider brand Stella Artois will enjoy a three year sponsorship deal with Ascot Racecourse.

The partnership includes distribution across the racecourse, including that of two new cider fruit variants (peach and elderflower).

Ascot Racecourse is home to flat race meeting Royal Ascot, which it describes as “ a celebration of horseracing at its very best, [as well as] a social occasion like no other, steeped in history and synonymous with pageantry and style.”


Stella Artois’ other brand partners include Wimbledon, The Open, and the Cannes Film Festival. 

See the related news section below for more of this week's top stories.

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