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Modelo Dethrones Bud Light As America's Favorite Beer Amid Boycotts

Modelo Dethrones Bud Light As America's Favorite Beer Amid Boycotts

Three people holding beer glasses.
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The brand has taken a hit after both right-wing zealots and the LGBTQ+ community boycotted Bud Light for VERY different reasons.

Modelo Especial from Constellation Brands overtook Bud Light as America's most popular beer brand for the second month after a controversy knocked the beer out of the top spot.

This switch-up is likely due to the controversy surrounding Bud Light and trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney, who gained popularity for her “Days of Girlhood” TikTok series where she documented her transition.

Anheuser-Busch sent Mulvaney a can of Bud Light with her face on it which set off a series of boycotts. First right-wing zealots boycotted the brand for supporting the trans TikToker and then when Bud Light didn’t step up to protect Mulvaney from the transphobic hate she was being hit with, the LGBTQ+ community switched to brands that support the queer community.

The controversy started in April and you can see an immediate decline in sales. In March, Bud Light held 10% of the domestic market share, but by April it went down to 8.7 percent, in May it was 7.6 percent, and by the end of June, it was all the way down at 7 percent.

Modelo, on the other hand, saw an uptick in sales as people switched to a brand with a history of supporting LGBTQ+ rights. It was the “top-selling beer brand for the four weeks ended July 1, with an 8.7 percent share of overall beer sales through retail stores for the period,” according to Routers.

The numbers aren’t available for July yet, but it’ll be interesting to see if the trend continues!

Beer brands supporting the LGBTQ+ community is nothing new. Modelo’s parent company partners with Stonewall Sports which works to promote LGBTQ+ representation in sports. The company was also listed as a top place for LGBTQ+ people to work in 2022 by the Human Rights Campaign’s Equality Index.

Over the years many brands have shown their support by sponsoring Pride events, even Bud Light. In fact, the brand faced backlash from conservatives after it sponsored this year’s Toronto Pride, according to reporting by Newsweek.

It may be too early to know how long this trend will continue, but Neil Reid, a beer industry researcher from the University of Toledo, told Reuters, "This boycott has now become something much more permanent than anyone anticipated.”

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