If you drink beer this might affect you: Anheuser-Busch to scale back 3.2 beer brands

Beer in a supermarket. Salt Lake City, Utah, undated. | Photo courtesy of Ben Winslow, Fox13now.com, St. George News

SALT LAKE CITY — The world’s largest brewing company is going to stop producing some 3.2 beer brands, which will have an impact on Utah.

In a statement to FOX 13, Anheuser-Busch said it was planning to scale back on 3.2 beer in response to recent votes in Oklahoma, Colorado and Kansas to move away from the lighter alcohol content beers.

“We will not be able to produce certain 3.2 beer brands and package configurations as demand declines due to the actions taken in Oklahoma, Colorado and Kansas,” Anson Frericks, Region Vice President of Anheuser-Busch, said in an email. “Therefore, it will not be feasible to offer the full portfolio of beers that we currently offer to Utah consumers.”

That leaves Utah as the largest consumer of 3.2 beer, with 29 percent of the market (compared to Oklahoma’s 56 percent). Utahns consume about 33 million gallons of it each year.

Last month, Utah lawmakers began addressing a potential future without 3.2 beer. Right now, it is the only one allowed to be served on draft or in grocery and convenience stores (high point beer is sold in state-run liquor stores).

The Utah DABC said it does not have the ability to absorb the impact if 3.2 beer went away, and there is a potential loss in sales tax revenue from stores.

Read the full story here:  Fox13Now.com.

Written by BEN WINSLOW, Fox13Now.com

Copyright 2017, KSTU. A Tribune broadcasting station

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11 Comments

  • DB July 29, 2017 at 3:19 pm

    It’s about time. Show me the evidence that 3.2 beer or the upcoming .05 DUI restriction will cut down on drunk driving deaths. If Utah has a lower death rate than other states in this regard, it’s due to the high LDS population, not state regulations.

    • Real Life July 29, 2017 at 5:42 pm

      Absolutely. Utah’s backwards liquor laws are finally under assault. “Near beer” is about to become a thing of the past, because the majority have cime to their senses. You want tougher DUI laws? Go after repeat offenders, and put the hammer to them, don’t make criminals out of somebody having a glass of wine with dinner.

  • Caveat_Emptor July 29, 2017 at 3:39 pm

    This has been “brewing” for a while, and as usual our state legislature is slow to react to all things alcohol.
    It is highly unlikely, given Utah’s culture, that supermarkets and convenience stores will sell all types of beer, like Idaho, Nevada, California, etc. etc.
    However, if the DABC raises the distribution limit from the current 3.2% ABW / 4.0% ABV up to 4.0% ABW / 5.0% ABV for example, it is highly likely that most of the mainstream beers will fit just under the limit, and be available in current consumer outlets.
    Craft beers, especially good IPAs, tend to be above the 4.0% ABW / 5.0% ABV threshold, and would therefore continue to be distributed by the DABC store network.
    So, a compromise is likely, and a vast majority of the beer consumed in this state would still be available chilled in the consumer outlets.

  • comments July 29, 2017 at 5:30 pm

    Anheuser-Busch = goat …

    you won’t be missed

    Ed. Ellipsis

  • Larry July 29, 2017 at 8:13 pm

    3.2 Beer is only in demand and purchased because there are still some people out there that really don’t want to get drunk but do feel the need for frequent urination….And for the record, no one can really buy beer, especially 3.2, You can only Rent it.

    • An actual Independent August 2, 2017 at 7:31 pm

      No. It’s only been made and sold because many states had laws restricting some or all beer sales to 3.2%. People still wanted to buy beer, so brewers had to make 3.2 in order to serve those communities. Those laws are disappearing, so the demand for 3.2 is dropping and it’s no longer feasible for brewers to offer the full line of 3.2 beer that they once did.
      I grew up a few short miles from the Coors brewery n Golden. Any friends’parents and grandparents worked there and we were very familiar with the economics. (Coors even remained open throughout Prohibition by making porcelain at the plant)

  • utahdiablo July 29, 2017 at 8:52 pm

    Oh, it will affect me and anyone else who’s had to drive to Mesquite to buy real beer, sorry Mr Lee, but my Beer money will be staying in Utah once we get the real deal 5%…;>)

  • Lee Sanders July 29, 2017 at 9:52 pm

    And of course, for those in southwest Utah, it’s just a short trip to Beaver Dam or Mesquite. Maybe they’ll wake up when sales tax revenues start to hit them where it hurts.

  • ladybugavenger July 30, 2017 at 8:30 am

    Voters in Oklahoma overwhelmingly voted for high point beer. However, It won’t come into effect until the end of 2018. The liquor stores are not happy as of 2018, they will no longer control and capatilize the market. Yes, Oklahoma is not much different than Utah. The liquor stores are not state agencies (that I’m aware of) but that’s the only place you can buy hard alcohol and they are closed on Sunday. You can buy low point beer at gas stations and grocery stores, etc. The voters voted and the law has changed but not in effect yet. It will be interesting to see the affect on dui’s and dui deaths. Will they remain the same? Or will they dramatically increase?

    • An actual Independent August 2, 2017 at 7:33 pm

      Colorado, home of Coors, has changed many of their liquor laws. DUI results were so unaffected that they ended up legalizing marijuana too.

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