Truckers who distribute Bud Light across the United States have faced abuse, including homophobic slurs following backlash over the beer’s association with Dylan Mulvaney.
Details of the incidents were reported as a former Anheuser-Busch executive said independent dealers are the “big losers” amid the ongoing furor.
Several have reported that a decline in Bud Light sales has affected business. Many are family-owned businesses that are independent of Anheuser-Busch and have been surprised by Mulvaney’s involvement and the subsequent reaction.
Some said their drivers were giving them the middle finger and even calling them ‘gay beer vendors,’ according to ABC News.
Anheuser-Busch is now desperately trying to win back customers who have boycotted its products, which also include Budweiser and Michelob.
Bud Light distributors have been abused by the beer’s association with Dylan Mulvaney, it is claimed. A former Anheuser-Busch executive said independent dealers have been the ‘big losers’ in the debacle.
Anheuser-Busch is now desperately trying to win back customers who boycotted its products, which also include Budweiser and Michelob.
Anson Frericks, who left his executive role at Anheuser-Busch last year, said: ‘The biggest losers here are the 500 independent companies in the US that distribute Anheuser-Busch products. Those are the people who really suffer.
The president of a distributor said that wholesalers and their staff are in a “very bad situation” and lamented the “frustrating” situation.
Some of the distributors are considering increasing the paychecks of commission-dependent workers after revenue and sales were hit by the ongoing boycott.
Pestinger Distribution Company in Kansas told ABC that Bud Light sales have fallen about 30 percent in recent weeks. Owner Matt Pestinger said, “We’re a little stressed because you never want to see red.”
He said he still has faith in Anheuser-Busch’s leadership and ‘[respects] the way they’ve been handling it.
Another company boss said workers were “feeling” it.
A third added: “In the end, the people most hurt are the local small business retailers and wholesalers in your community.”
Anheuser-Busch, the company that owns Budweiser and Bud Light, has lost $15 billion in value since the merger was announced.
Budweiser recently partnered with Harley-Davidson for a macho commercial featuring beer cans emblazoned with the motorcycle maker’s logo, as company executives try to win back customers.
Bud Light’s association with trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney has caused a decline in sales.
The commercial features a grey-haired mechanic working on a Harley bike before three men are shown drinking the beer.
Speaking over a rock instrumental, a male narrator says, “The greatest legacies are built with determination and resilience, one detail at a time.” Limited Edition Budweiser Harley-Davidson Cans – for those who give their all to their craft. This bud is for you.
The masculine tone is in stark contrast to Bud Light’s ill-fated partnership with Mulvaney, 26, in which the trans influencer was given a beer can with her face on it to celebrate 365 days of “womanhood.”
And because Anheuser-Busch has lost value, competitors have added $3.2 billion in market value to their brands.
Molson Coors, which owns Coors Lite, has seen a market value increase of $2.2 billion, about 20 percent, while Heineken has a $1 billion increase, up 1.7 percent. .
Bud Light sales have fallen significantly since the beer’s partnership with Dyland Mulvaney and JPMorgan analysts expect Anheuser-Busch’s profit to fall 26% this year.
Bud Light sales fell more than 23 percent as of the week ending May 6, according to Jared Dinges, a beverage analyst at JPMorgan.
He said the bank expects a volume decline of 12 to 13 percent over the course of a year in the US.
“We believe there is a subset of US consumers who won’t be drinking a Bud Light for the foreseeable future,” the analysts said Tuesday.
He added: ‘Stocks have underperformed their EU Beer peers by 15% since early April.
“We believe this is due to uncertainty in the US as investor focus has shifted squarely to the potential impact of the Bud Light controversy.”