By Aaron Ramson
It’s been a few years since the corporate mega brands of AB Inbev and MillerCoors have tried to sell us more of their product through gimmicky marketing designed to appeal to those who like shiny objects (aka, stupid people), but summer 2019 sees Corona Extra here to fill that void. Let’s be honest with each other; no one drinks Corona for its flavor, we drink it because we like the commercials (like, I wanna be sitting beachside in a Chaise lounge, watching the sunset, but instead I’m here at the casino getting rid of the rent money again, so I’ll just drink this bottle of Corona and see if it helps me to forget how much I hate my poor decision making skills). In a massive bid to sell more of their pee flavored beer while seeming woke af (which is a fancy way of saying enlightened), Corona has ditched 6-pack plastic rings by selling beer cans that screw and stack on each other.
Yup, you read that right. Corona is selling us beer that can stack into a pole, and they’re telling us that it’s for the environment. First of all, I am not against beer that can morph into an aluminum bat like the worlds most drunken Transformer, in fact this is probably all I would have wanted out of life when I was 21 and dumber than a box of crayons. See, all I had when I was 21 was the Miller Lite vortex bottle.
They put spiraled rifling in the inside of the bottleneck in an attempt to…what the hell was the reason for doing that anyway? Does anyone even remember? What, did beer not pour out of the glass with enough velocity, so we needed our bottles re-engineered with sniper rifle schematics? Those spirals in the bottleneck did absolutely nothing except look different from all the other bottles sitting next to them on the grocery store shelves. Which is why they did it.
Meanwhile, us Coors Light drinkers were doing the backstroke in a sea of useless gimmicks like Scrooge McDuck swimming in his money. First, we had the “Frost Brewed Liner,” which turned the ring tab and top lip of the can blue once it was cold enough. I was already looking for bugs, cigarette butts and stray beer pong balls in my brewski every time I picked it up, and now I had the added shame of knowing I was a complete peasant for drinking my beer warm and without the blue ring. Then, Coors Light gave us the “Vented Widemouth Can.” Realizing that their beer tastes like corn syrup tea once it gets warm enough, MillerCoors tackled this issue by giving their can a wider mouth and a “vent,” which everyone knew was complete baloney. That vent wasn’t even a vent, it was a tiny raised bar on the upper corner of the mouth, which was filled completely with beer anytime you tilted the can to pour anyway. Stupid.
I swear Coors Light must have had rival marketing teams fighting for turf like the wimpiest Jets and Sharks ever, because there seemed to be no end to the ridiculous ideas they were coming up with. Coors Light started selling 12-packs of these squishy, slippery plastic bottles in a cooler pack, which was a normal carboard box but lined with blue plastic on the inside, so you could fill the box itself with ice. Those boxes would leak almost immediately, turning your car seat, kitchen counter, or teenage brother’s lap into a soggy mess right quick. None of MillerCoors marketing gimmicks did what they were supposed to, unless you consider the fact that they weren’t supposed to do shit except draw attention.
And that’s where we should start when we take a look at Corona Extra’s new stackable beer cans, the fact that it probably will fail on every front except its ability to get people to talk.
Corona has made it extra clear is that their reason for this new look is to save the environment. By eliminating 6-pack plastic rings from their product, AB Inbev (who owns Corona in Mexico, while Groupo Modelo owns Corona in the States) is claiming to eliminate extra packaging materials which can end up in landfills, or worse, harming marine life. Corona Extra has even gone so far as to make their screw-can schematic open sourced, which means other companies are free to adopt the idea and use it themselves. Corona wants to be the Tesla of the beer world in this way, creating a solution that they hope to see adopted by rivals, because that really is the only way Corona’s new design is going to succeed.
As much as we all applaud the idea of saving the environment, we applaud the idea of convenience and familiarity even more (because we’re stupid, I said so right at the beginning of this article). As fun and novel as Corona’s new promo video (available on YouTube and Vimeo) makes the cans seem, they present logistical challenges not addressed thus far. Are the cans just supposed to sit individually on the grocery store shelves until people pick them up and screw them together to make a 6-pack? Does this mean that retailers will have to allow the sales of individual cans if the consumer only wants to stack 5 of them? Do the cans in a 12-pack have the screw top too, and if so why are they still in a cardboard box? Why doesn’t Corona just put their 6-packs in a cardboard box?
Questions like these are why I was kicked out of Sunday school. Miss Thompson got tired of me asking about dinosaurs and the bible right quick.
Corona Extra is currently market testing these new cans in Mexico, but they will be available stateside if they prove to be a success there. I don’t see this product making any revolution in the way beer is canned, but for right now it’s creating water cooler talk and getting people to discus what the brewing industry can do to be better,
Which is a hell of a lot more than Bud light did when it gave us the “Write On Label.” That was stupid.