Almost all of the world’s mega-brewers have weaseled their way into the legal cannabis space, yet Anheuser-Busch InBev, the largest of them all, has been somewhat aloof when it comes to saying whether the company is considering a similar move.
Earlier this year, CEO Carlos Brito told Just Drinks that while cannabis was something the company was “trying to learn more about,” he didn’t feel any sort of game plan was necessary.
But there is evidence that Anheuser-Busch is interested in selling THC-infused products. In fact, it is is investing in the essential infrastructure for such an endeavor.
Operations recently appointed a Chief Non-Alcohol Beverages Officer — a new position within the company’s hierarchy — in an effort to expand its non-alcoholic beverages division. The brewer said last month that the role was created “to maximize the opportunities we have in our existing portfolio.”
“The Chief Non-Alcohol Beverages Officer will focus on supporting zone teams to accelerate growth in our existing non-alcohol business (this does not include low and non-alcohol beer), which already represents more than 10 percent of our current volume,” Anheuser-Busch said in a statement.
The company hopes this line of sober offerings will account for 20 percent of it overall sales by 2025.
Incidentally, all of the cannabis-infused beverages currently under development by Anheuser-Busch competitors (Constellation Brands and Molson Coors) are of the non-alcoholic variety. These companies plan to market stoner sips to both lifelong cannabis users and newcomers interested in exploring legal marijuana through a more socially accepted means. After all, smoking weed is a dying trend, according to a report from Deloitte.