The king of beers is launching its first-ever nonalcoholic brew.
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Budweiser is rolling out Budweiser Zero, a low-calorie lager made without alcohol with a similar taste of the real thing, parent company Anheuser-Busch InBev announced Wednesday. The sober booze is ABInBev’s latest foray into the better-for-you beverage category, joining its portfolio of spiked seltzers and light beers.
Budweiser Zero was created with retired NBA player Dwyane Wade, who taste-tested the product he says caters to athletes and others leading a health-focused lifestyle along with anyone who simply likes the taste of beer but wants to drink more responsibly.
One serving of Bud Zero contains 0 grams of sugar and 50 calories. A regular Budweiser, to compare, contains 145 calories. The sober brew is described to have a hop-forward bitterness with a crisp taste.
More consumers have shown interest in the low- and nonalcoholic beverage category and ABinBev is continuing to capture the growing market. The company launched Bud Light-branded hard seltzers nationally earlier this year, and its low-calorie, light beer Michelob Ultra is a leader in the segment.
Still, there is room for growth. The nonalcoholic beer category makes up only around 0.4 percent of the total $116 billion beer market, according to the Brewers Association.
“Over the past year, we have seen hundreds of new beverage options come to market, with non-alcoholic and alcohol-free beverages quickly rising in popularity,” Monica Rustgi, Budweiser vice president of marketing, said in a statement.
“Budweiser has an incredible opportunity to propel this movement into mainstream culture by offering a product that doesn’t compromise on the quality and taste people have come to know and love from Budweiser, a brand they trust.”
Bud Zero had a soft launch in select markets in March and will be on sale in 12-packs of 12-ounce cans and 16-ounce single cans in December.