The Brewers Association (BA) has launched a tongue-in-cheek crowdfunding campaign – the largest one ever – in a bid to raise $213bn which it will use to buy Anheuser-Busch InBev.

According to the BA, the not-for-profit organisation that represents America’s small and independent brewers, AB InBev represents “the biggest – and the most powerful – of Big Beer, so Take Craft Back aims to make them an offer they can’t refuse.”

“Over the past several years, Big Beer has been attempting to buy their way into the craft beer movement by acquiring small breweries at a rapid rate and using their acquisitions to invent craft brewing bona-fides.”

The Take Craft Back campaign features a ‘not-yet-superstar’ Andy – described as an avowed lover of craft beer – who has stated that his affinity for craft beer makes him highly qualified to serve as a campaign spokesperson.

“Since 2011, Anheuser-Busch InBev has quietly acquired 10 small and independent breweries, but they won’t tell you that on their packaging,” said Andy.

“Just try to name all 10 without Googling…exactly. Big Beer creates an ‘illusion of choice,’ but we are presenting them with a reality check—and hopefully, at the end of the day, with a real check too.

“Independent craft brewers refuse to be muscled out by Big Beer, and we are uniting on an unprecedented scale to take on Big Beer and their efforts to make it harder for beer drinkers to find their favorite independent craft beers at their favorite bars, liquor stores and restaurants.”

At the time of writing, the campaign had raised over $2.4m from more than 7600 contributors – leaving only $212,997,000,000 left to be raised.

To reach the total amount of $213bn, the campaign would require that every person in the US contribute $653.37, and every person on the planet $28.78.

The BA encourages beer lovers everywhere to spread the word with hashtags #TakeCraftBack and #IndependentBeer.

The big brewers have responded to the campaign, with

Gemma Hart, an Anheuser-Busch InBev spokeswoman, saying: “We can take a joke. While the fake money for this campaign ‘piles’ up, we will keep focusing our donations on giving back to communities across our country.”

While Pete Marino, president of the MillerCoors craft division Tenth and Blake, said: “Maybe the BA should start by buying a few craft companies and see what kind of interest they get. If the number of inbound calls that we are getting is any indication, more and more independent craft brewers are open to the idea, or at the very least exploring their options to partner with a large brewer or financial partner.”

For full details of the campaign, including how to contribute, visit Pledges will only be collected after all $213bn has been secured.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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