The Bud Light Boycott Is Growing, Gaining Momentum

The volume, or units of beer sold, for Bud Light dropped by 29.5% in the week ending May 20, continuing a downward trend that began with the company’s marketing engagement with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.

The nationwide boycott against Bud Light is not losing momentum, with sales down 24.3% in the four weeks ending May 20 and 17.2% in the four weeks ending April 29.

Some customers may have been fooled into thinking that Bud Light’s announcement of its partnership with Mulvaney on April 1 was an April Fool’s joke. The dedicated customer base was appalled when they realized it was no joke. Not everyone thinks a man pretending to be a young girl should be the face of their chosen product.

To appeal to a younger demographic, AB has been accused of alienating its current consumer base through a transgender relationship. Some members of the LGBTQ+ community have also been insulted by the brewery; they argue that AB should have defended its partnership with Mulvaney.

Data from Bump Williams Consulting and Nielsen IQ show that the consequences of the brewery boycott intensified in May.

The fall in Bud Light sales was steeper in May than in April, but it might be plateauing. That plateau, however, is not good. He noted that the rate of decline may have stalled, but it has not reversed. 

Williams warns that the year-over-year numbers might increase if the boycott continues into the summer months when beer consumption surges, especially on vacation weekends.

Analysts on Wall Street say the Bud Light ad scandal and customer outrage will continue to harm earnings and stock prices through the end of the year and into next year.

Anheuser-Busch has offered $15 refunds on cases of Bud Light and Budweiser to boost declining sales, bringing the price of a 24-pack of cans down to less than $5 (and as low as $3.49 in certain areas).

The discounts are “significant — and it’s not even Memorial Day yet,” according to Beer Business Daily.