An heir to the Anheuser-Busch fortune spoke out against the company’s decision to partner with transgender activist and social media influencer Dylan Mulvaney, claiming it would have not sat well with his ancestors.
Billy Busch, heir to the Anheuser-Busch (AB) fortune, told TMZ Live his ancestors would have “rolled over in their graves” knowing the company they built had wandered into the maelstrom of divisive politics by featuring a transgender activist on one of their beer cans.
“My ancestors would have rolled over in their graves.” https://t.co/HXttx2IuaS
— TMZ (@TMZ) August 5, 2023
“They were very patriotic — they loved this country and what it stood for. They believed that transgender, gays — that sort of thing — was all a very personal issue. They loved this country because it is a free country and people are allowed to do what they want, but it was never meant to be on a beer can and never meant to be pushed into people’s faces,” Busch stated.
Busch praised the previous marketing work of AB, calling it some of the “greatest marketers ever in any business” referencing the company’s association with the Clydesdales particularly. “The last thing they would have done is get as controversial as they did … with Dylan Mulvaney,” he continued.
Of the “seismic” backlash AB faced since the Mulvaney debacle, Busch conceded it was understandable given the particular demographic of beer drinkers. He described them as typically average, hard-working men and women who don’t want agendas forced on them, particularly on the beverages they consume. “They want their beer to be truly American, truly patriotic.”
Busch, however, failed to explain in the interview what made AB’s previous support of Pride events and rainbow colored cans in celebration of Pride month different from that of a specialty can featuring Dylan Mulvaney. Busch rejected claims the TMZ Live hosts made that the backlash was centered on prejudice. “I just think prejudice against Jews or Black people … is a totally different deal” he contended. (RELATED: Most Americans Want Corporations To Stop Pushing Pride Month, See LGBT Ideology As Harmful To Kids: Polls)
Since the can with Mulvaney’s likeness was first revealed by the influencer on April 1, Bud Light sales tumbled significantly; a July 22 report shows a 26.8% decline. Bud Light’s continued fall in the market has proved beneficial for other brands: America’s No. 2 beer, Modelo Especial, is poised to take over the No. 1 spot as early as August, industry experts claim.