A few blogposts ago Jonathan made a post about the difference in positioning Stella in the UK and in Belgium. I'd like to add something to his post that I found pretty interesting.
As Jonathan clearly pointed out, Stella doesn't have the same alcohol content in the UK as in Belgium. Stella in the UK is 4.8% and in Belgium it's 5.2%. Now why is that?
Basically AB Inbev had seen the price for raw materials and energy costs rise which would force them to pass ona 7.8 per cent price increase across all it's brands. This however was not accepted by the majority of retailers forcing AB Inbev to find another solution.
This solution came in the form of a alcohol content decrease and smaller bottles. This way AB Inbev could save on taxes, estimated £8,6 million a year.
Officially AB Inbev reported that their decision to lower the alcohol content was based on the fact that lower-alcohol beers was an evolving trend in the UK.
Many may argue their honesty. Saving £8,6 million after a their sales dropped £11,6 million in 2011.
While the most won't really bother as long as the price doesn't change and the taste stays the same, there are a some 5.2 fans on a mission to bring back the 5.2 to the UK. You can join their facebookgroup.
To read the full article: source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2090136/Taxbeater-Stella-Budweiser-cut-alcohol-levels-bid-save-millions-pounds-duty-hikes.html#axzz2K8Qvd1DG