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A-B's Budvar negotiations attract ire of homebrewer.

In its quest to purchase a stake in the Czech Republic's Budvar brewery, Anheuser-Busch has faced many foes, including a lugubrious Czech bureacracy and wary Czech citizenry. Through it all, A-B has persevered, and the Czech government recently indicated likely approval for the sale of a Budvar stake to the American brewer.

Now, although the deal is virtually clinched, a U.S. opponent to the deal has surfaced.

Under the banner of the Fermenters of Special Southern Indiana Libations Society (FOSSILS), a group is circulating a copy of a recent CAMRA (Britain's Campaign for Real Ale) editorial decrying the U.S.-Czech brewery alliance.

FOSSILS also issues its own call for U.S. homebrewers to unite against the deal.

The CAMRA editorial excerpted by FOSSILS accuses A-B of "cultural imperialism" in its efforts to buy a Budvar stake, and says "we have no doubt that the real aim is to control Budvar, with 34 percent of the company becoming 51 percent in a few years' time." CAMRA goes on: "Once A-B gains control it can either close Budvar, brew its beers under license in the U.S. or bowdlerize the beer with cheap ingredients and corner-cutting production methods."

In its own commentary, FOSSILS says, "We know that Anheuser-Busch has done more than any other brewery to build and maintain a swillocracy [sic] by gutting the essence of beer as it was meant to be...we know that A-B cannot be trusted--not now, not ever...Budvar needs A-B's help about as much as your neighborhood day care center needs the help of a convicted child molester."

FOSSILS wrapped up its diatribe by proposing a letter-writing campaign to express the opposition of U.S. beer enthusiasts to the deal. The addresses for the Czech prime minister and A-B were included.
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Title Annotation:Anheuser-Busch
Publication:Modern Brewery Age
Date:Apr 11, 1994
Words:298
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