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Montana Ag Network: Corn syrup Super Bowl commercial sends 2 beer giants to court

Posted at 10:52 PM, Mar 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-28 00:57:10-04

The Super Bowl commercial featuring Bud Light blasting both Miller Lite and Coors Light for using corn syrup during their brewing process is headed the court.

MillerCoors has filed a lawsuit against Anheuser-Busch InBev seeking an immediate halt to the campaign. MillerCoors Media Relations Manager Marty Maloney says it’s false advertising meant to deceive customers and misuses the Miller and Coors trademarks.

“We’ve always believed in transparency, which is why we were actually the first major brewer to put nutritional information and all our ingredients online,” said Maloney. “It’s fearmongering it uses in many of its own beers, as a fermentation aid that’s not even present in the final product. This deliberate deception is bad for the entire beer category, and we just want to let the world the truth.”

MillerCoors owns both the Miller Lite and Coors Light brands.

Maloney said several factors played into the company’s decision to sue Anheuser-Busch, which owns Budweiser and Bud Light.

“One, the farming and agriculture community is rightfully very upset,” said Maloney. “Two, their sales have declined at an accelerated rate. And three, they can’t keep their story straight on why they launched this campaign to begin with which I think speaks to our original point which is from the onset they were out there to mislead and stoke fear in consumers.”

As both of these beer giants head to court, MillerCoors is seeking an injunction to stop Anheuser-Busch from continuing the ad campaign and is asking for a trial by jury and for defendants to pay its legal fees.

MillerCoors alleges that Bud Light singled out its use of corn syrup because it found, using focus groups, that consumers don’t understand the differences between corn syrup and high-fructose corn syrup, which has been linked to obesity.

Anheuser-Busch says it stands by its Bud Light ad campaign and calls the MillerCoors lawsuit baseless.

Story by Russell Nemetz, MTN News