Bud Light buying back unsold, expired beer from wholesalers as sales continue to suffer: report
Bud Light has reportedly informed wholesalers it would buy back unsold beer once it expires as the company continues to face backlash from its polarizing pact with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.
The Wall Street Journal published a lengthy feature on the company’s struggles after conservatives across America have ditched Bud Light over the saga that began in March when Mulvaney publicized that the beer company sent packs of Bud Light featuring the influencer’s face as a way to celebrate a full year of "girlhood." Backlash was swift, and the promotion is now considered one of the most polarizing in the history of the digital space.
Now it seems parent company Anheuser-Busch is taking steps to help wholesalers who have taken a hit.
"The brewer recently told its wholesalers that it would buy back unsold cases of beer that have gone past their expiration date," the Wall Street Journal report.
BUD LIGHT IN ‘SERIOUS TROUBLE’ OF LOSING STATUS AS TOP-SELLING BEER IN US, INDUSTRY EXPERT WARNS
Anheuser-Busch did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Bud Light continues to face backlash more than a month after its polarizing pact with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney prompted outrage. Photo Illustration by Igor Golovniov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
"Anheuser-Busch works with 385 independent distributors, or wholesalers, across the country," the WSJ added. "Many of them are family-owned businesses that have carried Anheuser-Busch products for generations … the wholesalers’ employees, many driving trucks bearing the Bud Light logo, were soon confronted by angry people on streets, in stores and in bars. There were bomb threats at several Anheuser-Busch facilities and wholesaler locations."
Compared to a year ago, retail sales of Bud Light in the U.S. were down by 23.6% in the week ending on May 6, surpassing the 23.3% decline the brand saw in the last week of April, according to data from Bump Williams Consulting and NielsenIQ, cited by the New York Post.
CEO DISTANCES ANHEUSER-BUSCH FROM BUD LIGHT DYLAN MULVANEY CONTROVERSY: 'NOT A FORMAL CAMPAIGN'
Anheuser-Busch InBev CEO Michel Doukeris has attempted to downplay the partnership. He told investors there is "misinformation" spreading on social media about the company's team-up with Mulvaney.x
Bud Light has reportedly informed wholesalers it would buy back unsold beer once it expires as the company continues to face backlash from its polarizing pact with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney. (Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Imag
"We need to clarify the facts that this was one can, one influencer, one post and not a campaign," Doukeris said in comments that were expanded on by the WSJ.
"The single personalized can made for Mulvaney was not available for sale. Yet as the backlash picked up, many people, including bar and store owners, wrongly believed that Mulvaney’s video was a television commercial or that the can with her picture on it was available in stores," the WSJ noted.
The company has since attempted to make amends with its customers. Bud Light marketing vice president Alissa Heinerscheid and Daniel Blake, who oversees marketing for Anheuser-Busch’s mainstream brands, both took a leave of absence after the backlash, particularly after Heinerscheid was caught in an interview blasting the brand as previously being "fratty" with "out of touch humor."
BUD LIGHT’S PACT WITH TRANS ACTIVIST DYLAN MULVANEY SPARKS OUTRAGE, PRAISE
The company has also attempted to contextualize the Mulvaney videos, explaining that a "third-party ad agency" was responsible for the collaboration with no intention to sell the can.
The company is also set to launch a line of camouflage aluminum bottles that promote the "Folds of Honor" program, which provides educational scholarships for families of fallen and disabled American military service members and first responders, the New York Post reported.
Many have argued the attempts to undo the damage from the Mulvaney marketing campaign will not undo the damage done to the brand.
Fox News’ Madeline Coggins contributed to this report.
Get the latest updates on this story at FOXNews.com.