How would we ever call free beer a bad thing?

When Anheuser-Busch was taken over by the Belgian company In-Bev people across the drinking world showered the deal with criticisms of all kinds.  In-Bev’s marketing department certainly had a challenge on its hands.  But they don’t seem to be doing themselves much good these days.  In a move that has angered tourists, In-Bev has decided to end the practice of giving out free beer samples to customers of its Busch Gardens and SeaWorld theme parks.

According to a story in the Washington Business Journal, In-Bev decided to do this because the hospitality centers that offered the free brew did not have a broad enough appeal to customers?

Visitors of legal age will be able to buy beer at the parks, which will convert their beer sampling hospitality centers into cafes and restaurants, said Fred Jacobs, a spokesman for Busch Entertainment.

“The hospitality centers had pretty limited appeal because it was for patrons who were of legal drinking age who wanted beer,” he said. “We were looking for something that had a broader age appeal.”

Now it’s bad enough to stop such an age old wonderful tradition, but do you really need to compound the anger by coming up with such a transparently silly reason?  I mean, really…

No, having a broader appeal has nothing to do with it.  Perhaps the economy is hurting attendance at the parks.  But more likely, In-Bev is preparing to sell off its theme parks division.  It has been rumored since the sale that In-Bev wanted to unload them.  Time will tell…

Published in: Uncategorized on January 6, 2009 at 10:04 am  Leave a Comment  
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