Back in April, Miller Lite announced that they’d be rolling out their new “Brewers Collection” nationwide by September. While I do have some misgivings about the idea of buying a beer from a megabrewer that’s seemingly being marketed purely to ride the coattails of the growing popularity of actual craft beer, I was actually looking forward to seeing if they could pull it off. The Lite wheat, amber and blonde ale styles were set to be marketed as “Craft Beer. Done Lite.” with a mere 110 calories per 12-ounce serving. (That’s music to the ears of a guy who swears he’s getting a little pudgier around the tummy in his 30′s!)
After spending last weekend driving 10 hours each way to Ohio, I started taking stock of just how much junk I ate during the trip. From Krispy Kreme and White Castle to Roy Rogers and Burger King, it’s amazing what being cooped up in a car for hours on end will do to your diet… Thankfully, our friends at Miller are here to rescue me from my growing waistline with what can only be described as the greatest scientific discovery of this century – a light beer that is only 64 calories and 2.4 grams of carbohydrates per 12 ounce serving!
Yes, that’s right, it’s time for MGD 64, the beer that’s lighter than lite!
MGD 64 is a reformulation of Miller Genuine Draft Light that has just 64 calories. It was initially launched last summer in Madison, Wisconsin and the feedback was positive enough for Miller to roll it out to a handful of additional test markets in March, including Arizona, San Diego and Sacramento.
This almost feels like a tree falling in the woods if no one is around to hear it.
So, if craft beer is, by definition, meant to be brewed in small batches with limited distribution, what happens when the nation’s second largest brewer takes its best-selling beer and serves it up, craft-style? Can it still really be called a craft beer?
Let the debate begin as Miller Lite is bringing its ”Brewers Collection,” featuring three craft-style light beers, nationwide in September. They’ve been available in Baltimore, Charlotte, N.C., Minneapolis, and San Diego since February with strong initial sales.
The IRI Beer, Wine and Spirits Practice, an independent company which provides manufacturers, distributors and retailers with market information, announced its “Top 30 Beer Brand Performers in 2007″ and “Top 15 New Beer Brands in 2007.” The lists provide a look at the industry’s 30 fastest growing beer brands as well as emerging new brand entries.
For the Top 30 Beer Brand Performers ranking, IRI analyzed volume growth, share of segment trends, everyday base pricing, and incremental sales growth in 2007 versus 2006 to determine the brands with the strongest performance in the beer industry. (Or, if you’ve had a couple already today, that’d be a ranking of the brews which saw the biggest growth in 2007, not necessarily the brands that sold the most overall.)