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article imageU.S. lawsuit claim Budweiser watered down beers

By Robert Myles     Feb 27, 2013 in Food
Brewing giant Anheuser-Busch, which brews the popular brand Budweiser, has been accused of watering down its beers in a class action brought in courts in various US states. The drinks giant refutes the claims saying they are “completely false".
Law suits have been filed by a number of plaintiffs in courts in California, Pennsylvania and other states reports the Business Insider. Beer drinkers accuse Anheuser-Busch of watering down a number of leading brands such as Budweiser and Michelob and are seeking multi-million pound damages awards.
In the complaint lodged with a court in San Francisco, the plaintiffs allege too much water was added to beers with the purpose of inflating company profits. According to their bottle labels, both Budweiser and Michelob in their ordinary form are supposed to contain 5% alcohol with the ‘lite’ versions having an alcohol content of 4%. The plaintiffs’ claims, however, are not based on bottle testing but on information from a number of former employees of the brewery giant across the US, says one of the lawyers involved.
Josh Boxer, from San Rafael, California-based Mills Law Firm told the Daily Mail, “We learned about the mislabelling from a number of former employees of AB (Anheuser-Busch) at breweries throughout the United States. And some high-level guys at the brewery level all told us that as a matter of AB corporate policy, these target brands are watered down.”
In the California and Missouri class actions, the plaintiffs allege Anheuser-Busch violated state consumer protection laws "by falsely labeling the alcohol content of its products." The California lawsuit goes on to ask the courts to award damages of an unspecified amount to any buyer of Budweiser of affected brands over the past five years.
Anheuser-Busch parent company, Anheuser-Busch InBev NV (ABI), the world’s biggest brewer, strongly refuted claims the company had watered down its beers. Bloomberg reports Peter Kraemer, the company’s vice president of brewing and supply saying the allegations were “completely false”. Mr Kraemer continued, “Our beers are in full compliance with all alcohol labeling laws. We proudly adhere to the highest standards in brewing our beers, which have made them the best-selling in the U.S. and the world.”
According to Bloomberg, Budweiser is ranked third most popular beer in the United States but many Anheuser-Busch brands, particularly Budweiser and Michelob, are now enjoyed by beer-drinkers all over the world.
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