Anheuser-Busch has agreed to stop selling caffeinated alcoholic beverages under pressure from a group of state attorneys general, who accused the beer giant of illegally marketing the drinks to minors. The AGs from New York, California and nine other states are continuing to go after other producers of such drinks.
Anheuser-Bush will cease producing "Tilt," "Bud Extra," or any other so-called energy drinks under an agreement announced by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo June 26.
"Anheuser-Busch was making false or misleading statements about the health and energizing effects of Tilt and Bud Extra," Cuomo stated. "Caffeinated alcoholic beverages, which taste and look like popular non-alcoholic energy drinks, are popular with young people. Aggressive marketing campaigns reinforce the common misconception that caffeine in the drinks will counteract the effects of alcohol."
A-B said it had been persuaded that sticking with the drinks "may detract from our reputation as the global industry leader in promoting responsibility among adults who drink and discouraging underage drinking."
The turnabout came after A-B appeared to win an initial round in the battle to keep caffeinated alcohol beverages on the shelves.
Last year, the AGs from 29 states and Guam asked the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau to investigate the formulation and marketing of alcoholic beverages that contain caffeine and other stimulants. The ATTTB responded that it had reviewed and approved labeling of the drinks, and took no action.
View the New York Attorney General's statement regarding Anheuser-Busch's decision at oag.state.ny.us.