As the decline in sales and shelf space for ‘malternatives’ continues in most markets, Anheuser-Busch adds another line extension. Do they know something we don’t?
Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc. is rolling out the latest addition to its family of Bacardi “malternatives.” Bacardi Silver Raz joins a lineup that includes Bacardi Silver and Bacardi Silver O3, the latter launched in March by the St. Louis-based brewer and named for its makeup of its flavoring of three oranges. Anheuser-Busch unveiled its rum-flavored Bacardi Silver a year ago. Flavored malt beverages account for about 2.6% of the beer market, though sales are expected to dip more than 14% this year, according to Marlene Coulis, Anheuser-Busch’s chief of new products.
Even with a decline in this relatively new category, A-B must feel there is enough current demand and ‘staying power’ to invest in more flavors. Plugged into their powerful distribution network, grabbing market share from other malternative brands, even as overall sales drop, is probably quite worthwhile for the number one brewer.