Natchez distributor weighs in on national Bud Light controversy

Published 11:26 am Saturday, April 29, 2023

An Adams County based beer distributor is weighing in on the national Bud Light controversy involving a transgender social media influencer.

Southwest Distributors Inc. posted a letter addressed from producer Anheuser-Busch to retail customers on its Facebook page this week in an effort to address the national calls for a boycott of Bud Light.

“As you know, Bud Light has been the subject of public discussion over the last few weeks,” it states. “Given the amount of misinformation and confusion that still exists, we want to reclarify several key facts:

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“• This was one single can given to one social media influencer.

“• It was not made for production or sale to the general public.

“• This can is not a formal campaign or advertisement.

“• Bud Light’s official campaign is ‘Easy to Drink, Easy to Enjoy.’ You may have seen our ad during the Super Bowl.”

The controversy began in early April, when Bud Light sent personally branded cans of beer to Dylan Mulvaney, a transgender social media influencer. Mulvaney, dressed as Aubrey Hepburn in the Breakfast at Tiffany’s movie, posted a video with the Bud Light cans on social media. The posts were part of a paid sponsorship deal and promotion for a sweepstakes challenge conducted by Bud Light.

The posts sparked immediate outrage from conservatives, from musicians to politicians. Kid Rock, a conservative musician, posted a video of himself shooting cases of Bud Light. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) posted a photo of Coors Light on Twitter, with a caption saying “I would have bought the king of beers, but it changed it’s (sic) gender to the queen of beers.” Travis Tritt, a well-known country singer, dropped Anheuser-Busch from his tour sponsorship.

The letter posted by Southwest Distributors references the company’s values and commitment to its customers.

“As we look forward, we are focused on the values that helped build our company – hard work and respect for one another. We, together with our independent wholesale partners, remain committed to supporting an array of local organizations to drive economic prosperity and strengthen our communities.

“You are our valued customer. Along with our independent wholesalers, we place great emphasis on the quality of our service and the value of our relationships.”

The company also said it has hired a new vice president of Bud Light and remains committed to “bringing people together over a beer.”

Read the full letter below: