Pete Coors Blames Millennials and Craft Brews for Big Beer's Decline

by The Drink Nation on May 8, 2014 in Culture

It’s no secret that Big Beer, especially that of the light variety, is an endangered species.

For years, statistics have shown a steady decline in sales of the piss-colored, flavor-deprived brews put forth in mass quantities by global beer Goliaths like AB InBev and Molson Coors, while craft beer sales continue growing at an impressive rate.

It’s not enough to shake the macrobrew monolith to its foundations — at least not yet, anyway — but it’s certainly something that’s becoming a growing concern for the beer world’s old guard.

Pete Coors, Chairman of MillerCoors and great-grandson of brewing legend Adolph Coors, recently acknowledged Big Beer’s unraveling in an interview with Denver Post’s beer blog First Drafts.

In the article, Coors tells reporter Jeremy Meyer that he’s doesn’t understand Americans’ growing thirst for full-flavored, all-grain craft brewed beers, let alone why anyone in their right mind would shell out their hard-earned shekels for a cold one that costs more than a Coors Light.

His first line of attack is laying into bar owners for pulling Coors Light off draft lines to make way for more craft taps, claiming that they’re blindly “enamored with craft beers.”

In reality, he should know that bar owners are on the front lines, interacting with beer drinkers on a daily basis, and their decisions for what goes on the tap lists more than likely reflects their patrons’ drinking preferences. If that wasn’t the case, those bars that fall for the craft beer’s siren call would likely be empty.

In the next breath, he goes after millennials, charging that they too are being hoodwinked by craft beer and its supposedly empty promise of delivering “more value” than Coors Light and similar commodity beers.

His arguments echo the same sour grapes blame-game perpetuated by Mitt Romney and his followers in the aftermath of his unsuccessful presidential bid in 2012. His campaign’s failures were blamed on everything from the supposed gifts President Obama and Democrats gave to those who he claimed didn’t “want to take personal responsibility and care for their lives” to Superstorm Sandy, Chris Christie and bloggers.

But like Pete Coors, who derides millennials for Big Beer falling out of favor, it really comes down to the fundamental fact that what Romney was selling was simply not what people wanted.

 


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