Bud Light backtracks from its Super Bowl ads about corn syrup

Anheuser-Busch InBev spent big on Super Bowl ads this year, shelling out for 6 minutes worth of ad time at an average price tag of $5.2 million per 30 seconds. It used the time to advertise its beer brands including Budweiser, Stella Artois, and Michelob Ultra. But it was the two Bud Light ads about corn syrup that got the most attention.

Bud Light’s commercials mocked Miller Lite and Coors Light for using corn syrup in their beer, which Bud Light does not use. The ads were a big hit with fans; many news sites included Bud Light among this year’s best Super Bowl ads.

The ads were not such a hit with competitors and corn farmers.

RELATED: 2019 celebrity Super Bowl ads

2019 Celebrity Super Bowl Ads
See Gallery
2019 Celebrity Super Bowl Ads

Andy Warhol for Burger King

The commercial features a nearly silent film of the iconic Pop Artist eating a Whopper.

It’s the first Super Bowl commercial 37 years in the making. The original 4-minute clip was created by Swedish director Jorgen Leth in 1982.

Sarah Jessica Parker and Jeff Bridges for Stella Artois x Water.org

The actors are reprising their iconic roles for a good cause.

Charlie Sheen and Alex Rodriguez for Planters

The actor pokes fun at his 'nuts' public image for a Super Bowl ad alongside the one and only, A Rod.

Serena Williams for Bumble

The tennis pro is teaming up with the dating app for it's first-ever Super Bowl commercial which highlights #InHerCourt.

Chance the Rapper and the Backstreet Boys for Doritos

To celebrate the launch of Flamin' Hot Nacho flavor, Doritos is teaming up the musicians for a hilarious and unexpected commercial.

Jason Bateman for Hyndai

The "Ozark" star is taking on the role of an elevator operator to help take the pain out of car shopping!

Cardi B, Steve Carell and Lil Jon for Pepsi

The three mega stars are teaming up with Pepsi for their always iconic Super Bowl commercial.

Harrison Ford for Amazon

The iconic actor is one of many familiar faces that appears in Amazon's 90-second spot, which sheds light on some "top-secret" Amazon Beta Testing Program teasers released last week.

Sarah Michelle Geller for OLAY

The "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" alum has aresume of thriller and horror roles, which makes her the perfect choice for Olay’s Super Bowl ad entitled ‘Killer Skin.’

Zoë Kravitz for Michelob ULTRA

The "Big Little Lies" star is reconnecting with the great outdoors through the power of the delicious organic beer.

Michael Buble for Bubly Sparkling Water

The Grammy-winner singer is collaborating with the sparkling water company for a hilarious play on his last name.

Michael C. Hall for Skittles

The "Dexter" actor will star as the lead in "Skittles Commercial: The Broadway Musical" on Sunday afternoon instead of the brand running a 30-second spot during the big game.

Harrison Ford for Amazon

Harrison Ford, Forest Whitaker, Broad City's Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson and astronaut Scott Kelly and twin brother Mark Kelly are all uniting with Amazon's Alexa.

Bo Jackson for Sprint

The football and baseball legend is teaming up with the mobile company to bring back the Sprint Robots.

HGTV’s Property Brothers for ADT

Drew and Jonathan Scott are coming together for ADT's first-ever Super Bowl advertisement called "Real Protection."


The National Corn Growers Association tweeted: “America’s corn farmers are disappointed in you... Thanks Miller Light and Coors Lite for supporting our industry.” Kevin Ross, first vice president of the NCGA, told Yahoo Finance the ad “implied that [corn syrup] was an inferior product and that the other beers were doing something wrong because they use corn syrup in the brewing process,” and called it an “attack.” Miller Lite took out a full-page ad in the New York Times on Wednesday saying, in part, “The ‘corn syrup’ we source from America’s heartland helps make Miller Lite taste so great... It’s unfortunate that our competitor’s Big Game ad created an unnecessary #corntroversy.” Coors Light tweeted on Wednesday, “Yes, we use corn syrup. It’s consumed by yeast during fermentation & never ends up in the beer you drink. That’s just beer making.” And critics pointed out that other AB-InBev beers do brew with corn syrup, including Busch and Natural Light.

Now Bud Light is publicly backtracking.

In a tweet on Wednesday afternoon presented as a note from the King character from the ad, Bud Light said, “Yeesh! That escalated quickly... In the Bud Light Kingdom we love corn too! Corn on the cob, corn bread, popcorn—we just don’t brew with the syrup (what you also call ‘dextrose’).”

A press email from a Bud Light spokesperson on Wednesday night was even more explicit. “To be clear, we are not saying corn syrup is bad, we just don’t use it in Bud Light,” the email said. “It’s a less expensive ingredient and we think a quality light lager only should include the best ingredients.”

To be sure, fans of the ad may see a contradiction in Bud Light now claiming, “We are not saying corn syrup is bad” after running two ads mocking the use of corn syrup. Others may see the reversal as an unnecessary step.

But clearly, the noise got loud enough that Bud Light felt compelled to do some damage control.

Daniel Roberts is the sports business writer at Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter at @readDanwrite.


Read Full Story