The dominant position of Bud Light as the world’s leading beer brand is facing a serious threat as its sales continue to decline rapidly.
One recent incident that garnered attention was Bud Light’s collaboration with social media influencer Dylan Mulvaney, who documented their “gender transition” on TikTok. According to data provided by Bump Williams Consulting and NielsenIQ to The New York Post, Bud Light experienced a staggering 25.7% decrease in sales for the week ending on May 20. Meanwhile, Modelo Especial, which saw a sales increase of 9.2%, is poised to potentially surpass Bud Light.
Bump Williams commented, “While Bud Light keeps losing ground, Modelo Especial keeps gaining momentum, and now Modelo outsells Bud Light on a national level across all trade channels combined. If this trend continues, Modelo will overtake Bud Light for the year.”
Other brands under the Anheuser-Busch umbrella also faced a decline in sales for the same week: Budweiser sales dropped by 11.2%, Michelob Ultra experienced a 6.5% decrease, Busch Light saw a reduction of 5.2%, and Natural Light sales dropped by 4.9%.
Modelo Especial is owned and produced by Constellation Brands in the United States, while Anheuser-Busch handles production in other regions.
On the other hand, Yuengling Flight experienced a remarkable surge in sales with a 47.6% increase. Williams noted, “Yuengling is currently thriving with the highest growth among all premium beers.”
In the weeks following the controversial partnership with Mulvaney, Anheuser-Busch seems to have faced criticism from both ends of the political spectrum. Gay bar owners threatened to boycott the company after interpreting a statement as downplaying the alliance, while the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the largest LGBTQ political lobbying organization in the nation, removed Anheuser-Busch’s perfect score on the Corporate Equality Index. The HRC considers this index as the “national benchmarking tool” for assessing corporate policies and benefits related to LGBTQ employees.
Insiders at the HRC claimed that the conglomerate missed a crucial opportunity to endorse Mulvaney, which resulted in strained relations with conservatives. Anheuser-Busch CEO Brendan Whitworth had issued a statement about the partnership, but it did not explicitly acknowledge Mulvaney or transgenderism. The CEO stated, “We never intended to be part of a discussion that divides people. We are in the business of bringing people together over a beer.”
Bud Light’s ongoing decline is occurring amid a broader trend of corporations embracing radical ideals and facing backlash. Retail giant Target recently experienced a significant drop in stock market valuation after marketing a swimsuit as “tuck-friendly” and engaging an artist with a history of designing Satanic merchandise. Reports indicate that both Target and Anheuser-Busch have embraced ESG goals focused on diversity and climate measures. Critics of the ESG movement argue that it prioritizes social objectives in a manner that detracts from profitability and utilizes corporate power to advance leftist agendas.