Free the Hops boycotting Birmingham Budweiser

01.23.2008 by André Natta · → 14 Comments

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Of the world’s Top 100 beers, only two are available here. Alabama has some of the most restrictive liquor laws in the nation still on the books years after Prohibition. Free the Hops (FTH) is a grassroots, citizen-driven organization trying to change that. For the second legislative session, the group will try to get state lawmakers to literally free the hops by increasing the limit on alcohol content allowed in beer. But first they have to battle with Birmingham Budweiser.

Free the Hops logoFTH has asked its members and supporters to join a formal boycott of Birmingham Budweiser products. In an e-mail sent late Tuesday night, new FTH president Stuart Carter says the leadership at the local beer distributor is “still working against the interests of both Anheuser Busch (who, in addition to Bud, brews dozens of beers that are currently illegal under Alabama law) and Alabama consumers. They have indicated that they will again work to prevent our bill, freeing the hops, from passing in the Alabama state legislature.”

FTH shares on its website that Alabama is one of only three states that limits alcohol by volume for beer to only 6%, and the only state that limits beer containers to a size of no more than 1 pint (16 American ounces).

Some reasons given for the stance against changing the laws include not wanting teens to get drunk on higher alcohol beverages. We here at The Terminal don’t know too many 16-year-olds who will choose expensive, gourmet beer over cheap, easy to get Bud Ice.

Beers on the FTH boycott list
• 9th Street Market Tuscan Orange
• Beach Bum Blonde Ale
• Bud Ice
• Bud Light
• Budweiser
• Busch
• Elk Mountain Amber Ale
• Hurricane
• Michelob Amber Bock
• Michelob Beer
• Michelob Black & Tan
• Michelob Golden Pilsner
• Michelob Hefeweizen
• Michelob Honey Lager
• Michelob Light
• Michelob Märzen
• Michelob Pale Ale
• Michelob Ultra
• Michelob Ultra Amber
• O’Doul’s
• O’Doul’s Amber
• Redbridge
• Shock Top Belgian White
• Spring Heat Spiced Wheat (Being turned into a year-round brew, Shock Top Belgian White)
• Sun Dog Amber Wheat ale
• Wild Blue
• Winter’s Bourbon Cask Ale
• Ziegenbock

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Filed under: Alabama · food · Statewide

14 comments
colm
colm

Luckily my favorite cheap beer isn't one of their pisswater brews, but I'll definitely be avoiding all their wares until I can buy decent craft brew in this state.

colm
colm

Luckily my favorite cheap beer isn't one of their pisswater brews, but I'll definitely be avoiding all their wares until I can buy decent craft brew in this state.

StephenS
StephenS

Fair enough... I've been a freethehops advocate since their inception. They've worked rediculously hard so that I can buy tastey belgian beers in state (and not make 2 and 1/2 hour beer runs to atlanta or nashville). And even though Budweiser is my staple, I'll be glad to boycott for more variety one day in the future. Thanks for the post!

StephenS
StephenS

Fair enough... I've been a freethehops advocate since their inception. They've worked rediculously hard so that I can buy tastey belgian beers in state (and not make 2 and 1/2 hour beer runs to atlanta or nashville). And even though Budweiser is my staple, I'll be glad to boycott for more variety one day in the future. Thanks for the post!

Vague Nomenclature
Vague Nomenclature

As a Free the Hops supporter, boycotting that list of beers shouldn't be a challenge.

Vague Nomenclature
Vague Nomenclature

As a Free the Hops supporter, boycotting that list of beers shouldn't be a challenge.

3choBoomer
3choBoomer

Thanks for the info! Count me in, of course I don't drink any of those beers anyway ;-)

3choBoomer
3choBoomer

Thanks for the info! Count me in, of course I don't drink any of those beers anyway ;-)

Casey
Casey

(just to clarify, A-B has a partial stake in Widmer for greater distribution, but Widmer is still .owned. by the original 2 owners/brothers).

Casey
Casey

(just to clarify, A-B has a partial stake in Widmer for greater distribution, but Widmer is still .owned. by the original 2 owners/brothers).

Casey
Casey

A-B has partial ownership in several craft breweries including Red Hook and Widmer Bros. (maybe others, not sure), so they are definitely interested in the craft beer segment. Both of these breweries have beers >6%. Even at the Great American Beer Festival, A-B has one of the largest beer sampling booths to showcase several Michelob 'craft' beers that are >6%. Budweiser is the biggest selling beer in the world by a wide margin.. it's even the most popular in Ireland.. Ireland!! What does Pat Lynch have to fear? I don't think it's money, and I don't think it's genuine concern about underage drinking since that reason is completely unfounded just by looking at the other states (especially those that have changed their beer laws in the past several years). I think Lynch just wants a fight for the sake of showing some his power with the state legislature. What FTH wants ... should have been passed without a fight and without much notice years ago, and without the need to even form their grassroots organization (though, I, for one, am thankful that they did).

Casey
Casey

A-B has partial ownership in several craft breweries including Red Hook and Widmer Bros. (maybe others, not sure), so they are definitely interested in the craft beer segment. Both of these breweries have beers >6%. Even at the Great American Beer Festival, A-B has one of the largest beer sampling booths to showcase several Michelob 'craft' beers that are >6%. Budweiser is the biggest selling beer in the world by a wide margin.. it's even the most popular in Ireland.. Ireland!! What does Pat Lynch have to fear? I don't think it's money, and I don't think it's genuine concern about underage drinking since that reason is completely unfounded just by looking at the other states (especially those that have changed their beer laws in the past several years). I think Lynch just wants a fight for the sake of showing some his power with the state legislature. What FTH wants ... should have been passed without a fight and without much notice years ago, and without the need to even form their grassroots organization (though, I, for one, am thankful that they did).

Curtis
Curtis

I thought boycotts were supposed to be hard... but that list of beer will be EASY to avoid and do without.

Curtis
Curtis

I thought boycotts were supposed to be hard... but that list of beer will be EASY to avoid and do without.