It seems every beer maker is slapping its name on a hard seltzer, and with more than 50 seltzers hitting the market already this year, the trend shows no sign of slowing down. Now Miller Genuine Draft is set to launch a hard seltzer.
The stunt aims to send a clear signal that Miller’s U.S. beers, including MGD, Miller Lite, Miller High Life and Miller64, are unabashedly sticking to beer and have no intention of entering the hard seltzer market.
“Hard seltzers are a cultural phenomenon, and people have asked if Miller has plans to launch a seltzer,” says Sofia Colucci, global vice president for the Miller family of brands. “We want to be clear: We will never launch a seltzer. Miller is unapologetically about beer. The only way we will ever launch a seltzer is if we’re launching it into oblivion.”
MGD acquired a 21-foot rocket, which will be stocked with some of the top hard seltzer brands on the market, destined for parts unknown. Beer lovers can let MGD know the brands they’d most like to see blasted into oblivion by visiting mgd.com/seltzerlaunch.
Miller is shoring up its beer bonafides at a time when hard seltzers are chipping away at the beer market, accounting for about 10% of all beer sales, according to Rabobank.
Meanwhile, Miller has remained — and intends to remain — focused on beer. Led by flagship Miller Lite, which ended 2020 posting 26 consecutive quarters of share growth within the premium lights segment, the Miller family of brands aims to remain true to the hundreds of millions of beer-drinking Americans.
And with pent-up demand to have a beer in a bar again as the on-premise reopens across the United States, Miller expects to continue its momentum, Colucci says.
Despite growing popularity for hard seltzers and related beer-adjacent products, “There is a lot of runway with people who like beer,” she says.
The mischievous seltzer “launch” comes in the wake of a recent wholesale brand redesign for MGD in the U.S., which modernized its packaging with a new look to help the brand stand out on shelves.
“We’ve gotten tons of positive feedback around the redesign,” she says. “MGD’s new look makes it clear it’s a beer drinker’s beer and always will be.”