Who Owns What Beers?

June 22, 2008 by General

Do you really want to Drink American? Your choices are getting smaller and smaller, but all is not lost… let’s see what’s on the shelf…

Anheuser-Busch InBev, a Belgian/Brazillian brewer that now owns Anheuser-Bush, has over 250 beer brands produced and sold throughout the world. This makes them the largest brewing company ever conglomeratized.

Under InBev, the flagship brands that you will mostly come across in the U.S. are Stella Artois, Brahma, Beck’s, Leffe, Boddingtons, Hoegaarden, Labatt, Löwenbräu, St. Pauli Girl and Tennent’s. Under the new “Belgweiser” ownership, they add over 40 different beers and malt liquors. The most popular are the Budweiser family of beers (Bud, Bud Light, Bud Select, etc.), the Michelob Family of beers (Michelob, Michelob Light, Michelob Ultra), the Busch Family of beers (Busch, Busch Light, Busch Ice), and who can forget the Natural “Natty” Family (Natural Light & Natural Ice).

A full list of Anheuser-Busch InBev beers can be found here and here.

Miller Brewing Company, although based in Milwaukee, WI, is owned by SABMiller (South African Breweries) which was created in 2002 when it was purchased from the Altria Group.

Some of Miller’s bigger brands include Miller Lite, Miller Genuine Draft, Olde English 800, Milwaukee’s Best, Mickey’s, Hamm’s, Icehouse, Red Dog, Leinenkugel’s and SouthPaw Light.

SABMiller’s biggest brands you may run across in the U.S. include international beers such as Pilsner Urquell, Peroni and Grolsch.

A full list of SABMiller beers can be found here.

Heineken International is a Dutch brewing company. Heineken owns over 115 breweries in more than 65 countries and ranks as the third largest brewery in the world after SABMiller and InBev.

The two largest brands that are distributed in the U.S. are Heineken and Amstel, but you may also find Zywiec and Birra Moretti.

A full list of Heineken beers can be found here.

The Coors Brewing Company is a regional division of the world’s fourth-largest brewing company, the Molson Coors Brewing Company, which was created in 2005.

The most popular of their brews include: Coors Original (“Banquet”), Coors Light, Killian’s Irish Red, Blue Moon, Keystone, and who can forget… Zima.

Politics aside, and in taste only, I pesonally do not like one SINGLE beer that Coors distributes in the U.S. On the other hand, Caffrey’s Irish Ale, my favorite beer possibly ever, was purchased by Coors from Interbrew and killed in the U.S. so that Coors can distribute the swill they call Killian’s Red. Don’t get me started on that, as I might have to make ANOTHER beer website… but you can read about that plight here.

Molson Canada, the other half of the Molson Coors Brewing Company, has about 20 beers all called Molson Something.

A full list of Molson Coors beers can be found here.

In 2007, to further complicate “who owns what,” SABMiller and Molson Coors Brewing Company announced a joint venture to be known as MillerCoors for their US operations that will market all of their products. It is quite possibly named MillerCoors because “SABMillerCoorsMolson” would be “confusing.”

Those are the big guys in brewing… their beers known in the U.S. collectivly as Budmilloors.  Since the July 13, 2008 announcement that Anheuser-Busch agreed to sell their American company to the Belgian giant, Pabst Brewing Company has gone to some lengths to make sure people know that they “will be the last of the famous iconic U.S. brewers to be fully independent and American-owned.”

Pabst Blue Ribbon–which is currently enjoying a resurgence in popularity–along with Schlitz, Stroh, Schaefer, Rainier, Olympia and quite a few others are brewed by the Pabst Brewing Company… which has NO BREWERIES.

Schaefer–which is currently enjoying a resurgence in my own personal drinking–and Schlitz–if you, or Officer Farva can even find it–fall into a category known as “virtual brewing.”  These beers are owned by F&M Schaefer Brewing Co., and Stroh Brewery Co., respectively. Both labels are owned by Pabst Brewing Co., which contracts the brewing out to Miller Brewing.

Is this complicated yet?

The beers of Pabst Brewing are indeed American owned, but they are brewed by a company that is owned by South African Breweries.  While I do not agree with their statement that they are “fully independent,” it is seemingly a better choice, especially during a time when we are trying to discover what is American and what is not… which leads me to… 

Rolling Rock, once known as being from Latrobe Brewing in Pennsylvania, was distributed by InBev for a number of years before being sold to Anheuser-Busch in 2006… and now back to AB InBev.

The list above covers quite a large amount of beers that you probably see everyday on your beermongers shelves. Want to drink American AND support your local craft brewer?  Here is the list of Truly American Beers.

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13 Comments on "Who Owns What Beers?"

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my name
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my name
1 year 11 days ago

How can these people get away with calling themselves ” american made” when indeed some are truly not. Don’t they have the Beer Police? I mean if we are going to lie let’s do it so that this day in age no one can Google anything and find the absurd truth. Wow that would hurt or at least it should. Ok I’m done thank you

Denis
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Denis
13 days 5 hours ago

This is not unusual for any product. Budweiser is Brewed predominantly in the U.S. but is foreign owned. Check you car manufacturers most Honda’s are made in the US but it’s owners are Japanese. Chrysler, is controlled by a conglomerate of owners, FIAT (Italy), Daimer (Germany). That’s the nature of the beast. Most of these entities produce multi thousands of jobs. The owners get the lions share but it’s better than a company moving everything overseas.

Barry
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Barry
9 months 16 days ago

Who cares! If you like the beer you drink what does it matter. It’s not like America is not going to survive. And should Europeans and other non-Americans adopt the same approach? Ridiculous! Go global – drink what you want and stop promoting trade sanctions and boycotts. Same goes for all products. Why be a Luddite? – look it up!

Jeff Richards
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Jeff Richards
13 days 7 hours ago

Idiot… Look it up.

Ed Penna
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Ed Penna
9 months 11 days ago

I want to locate and drink only American owned and American brewed beer. Do you have a list for me to work see? I live in Louisville my.

Denis
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Denis
13 days 5 hours ago

Yuengling is the oldest of the American beers but Samuel Adams is the biggest and Utica club maker of Matts and Saranac is the larges micro brewery.

Dan
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Dan
2 months 15 days ago

I like to buy, and drink, local. Increasingly for me that means local/regional microbrews, which are growing in number and popularity.

Lauren
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Lauren
2 months 7 days ago

I agree mostly on Coors- if my choice was Coors Light or no beer at all, I’d go beerless (and that’s saying something!) Coors does, however, have a couple of smaller batch beers that are worth trying if you’re ever in Colorado. I don’t know if they’re available much outside the Golden/ Denver area but Coors’ Barmen Pilsner and especially their Herman Joseph’s Private Reserve are really good! I’m almost never a fan of domestics or light lagers in general but these two sweet, bready German Style Pilseners really stand out from the rest of the Coors crowd.

David Mac
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David Mac
2 months 4 days ago

Shiner beer is owned by Corona out of Mexico

Ken
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Ken
1 month 19 days ago

This is a truly incredible situation, and very sad to read about. Depressing? Yes, but thank you for the enlightenment anyhow. Makes me want to brew my own or go out of my way to buy and drink locally brewed beers, of which we have a few around Wilmington, NC.

nativam
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nativam
1 month 10 days ago

We’ve lost America. And the Regressive Marxists, seeing our weakness, are ready to ‘bring it on’ soon, maybe before the Muslim colonialist traitor-in-chief leaves the WH. So there’s not much to celebrate this 4th of July. Better to buy beer making kits and whatever supplies you see are necessary to prepare for civil unrest, if not civil war.

Mike
Guest
28 days 7 hours ago

Wait, whatttttt??? I didn’t know any of this, it’s just NETS:(

John
Guest
John
8 hours 56 minutes ago

Sorry, but practically all American beers, are hardly beer at all, especially anything coming from AB. The so-called craft beers, and micro brews, in the US taste like someone shite in a bucket. The US, brewing industry, brews swill for pigs who wouldn’t know good beer, from shite.

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