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Budweiser To Promote Non-Alcoholic Beer At World Cup

Budweiser has found the perfect way to skirt the strict regulations at the World Cup this year. The soccer championship will take place in Qatar, a predominantly Muslim nation that has strict laws regarding alcohol. For instance, it's illegal to be drunk in public. That's a problem for a company like Budweiser that needs to make an appearance at the event! Or, at least, it was a problem.

The Official Beer Of A Sober Event?

Since Budweiser is the official beer of the World Cup, it has found a way to uphold its duties still while not doing anything illegal. Instead of promoting its classic beer, Budweiser will instead promote a non-alcoholic version of its trademark beverage.

The drink, called Budweiser Zero, will be available at stations around the tournament and inside the primary bowls of soccer stadiums. In Qatar, the sale of alcohol is not permitted in either of these locations.

The Perfect Opportunity

Budweiser has been searching for the perfect place to promote its new alcohol-free beverage -- and the World Cup, which begins in November, is definitely it.

“There will be millions of people watching the games, so it’s a sizable trial opportunity for sure,” explained Marcel Marcondes, the global chief marketing officer of Anheuser-Busch InBev.

Budweiser hopes to have low-alcohol and zero-alcohol products comprise at least 20% of its global beer volume by 2025. The current percentage is 6.63%, so the World Cup will be an excellent opportunity to boost sales and nudge the company towards its goals.

Speakeasies ... Sort Of

Fortunately, the sale of alcohol is not illegal in all of Qatar, so visitors at the World Cup will still be able to purchase Budweiser's more popular beverage, a.k.a. the alcoholic one, in some places. For instance, Bud is planning a "takeover" of the W Hotel in Doha, the country's capital.

Additionally, Qatar will slightly relax its alcohol-related laws during the World Cup, allowing visitors to purchase Budweiser in designated stadium areas outside the main bowls.

Don't Drink And Play Soccer!

According to Budweiser reps, the company is tailoring its World Cup presence to promote responsible alcohol consumption. It will lead what the company calls "Responsible Beverage Service," which trains bar employees on reducing binge drinking, underage drinking, and DUIs.

So, at least we know Budweiser is depriving spectators of their beer for a good cause!

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