The commercial depicted the use of corn syrup in beer as a negative practice
By Diego Flammini
American corn producers are pushing back against a Super Bowl commercial from a large beer company.
Bud Light’s medieval-themed commercial titled “Special Delivery” begins with a king discussing how beer is brewed when his subjects bring a large barrel of corn syrup to him.
“That’s not ours, we don’t brew Bud Light with corn syrup,” the king says in the commercial.
“Miller Lite uses corn syrup,” one of his subjects responds.
The commercial then shows a group of people trying to deliver the barrel of corn syrup to Miller Lite brewers. Upon learning this brewery had already received its shipment, the Bud Light group travels to deliver the corn syrup to the Coors Lite brewers.
“To be clear, we brew Coors Lite with corn syrup,” a man at that castle says before Bud Light’s tagline of “Brewed with no corn syrup” appears on the screen.
U.S. corn growers are displeased with how the ad portrays corn syrup.
“I was really disappointed with the commercial,” Curt Mether, president of the Iowa Corn Growers Association, told Farms.com. “It made corn syrup look like it’s bad when it really isn’t.”
This type of commercial means farmers will have to once again defend themselves, Mether added.
“It always seems like we’re on the defensive,” he said. “Our practices are good and they feed the world. But, no matter what you do, there always seems to be another issue coming around the corner.”
Ryan Buck, a corn grower from Goodhue, Minn., agreed.
“Corn syrup has been under attack for a long time, and that kind of imagery isn’t going to help the industry,” he told Farms.com.
The National Corn Growers Association also responded to Bud Light’s commercial.
“.@BudLight America’s corn farmers are disappointed in you,” the organization said on Twitter yesterday. “Out office is right down the road! We would love to discuss with you the many benefits on corn! Thanks @MillerLite and @CoorsLite for supporting our industry."
The commercial wasn't intended to paint agriculture in a negative light, but rather point out differences between beer competitors, a Bud Light rep said.
"Last year, Anheuser-Busch purchase more than one billion pounds of corn ingredients," a company spokesperson told Farms.com in an email. "We fully support corn growers and will continue to invest in the corn industry.
Bud Light's Super Bowl commercials are only meant to point out a key difference in Bud Light from some other light beers. The effort is to provide consumers transparency and elevate the beer category."