The U.K. Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has upheld two complaints against a website advertising Brewmeister Ltd.’s “Snake Venom” beer as “THE WORLD’S STRONGEST BEER.” In response to the first complaint, which disputed the beer’s stated alcohol by volume (ABV), the agency questioned whether the independent analysis that determined Snake Venom’s ABV differed from the process used for standard beer. Noting that the beer’s fermented alcohol content was concentrated via freeze distillation and possibly augmented with ethyl alcohol, ASA found the advertisement misleading because “consumers would interpret the claim ‘Snake venom 67.5%’ to mean the product had an alcohol volume of 67.5%, as per the standard ABV measure, without having been through any other additional processes to standard beer.”

ASA also upheld its own complaint challenging “whether the ad implied the drink may be preferred because of its alcohol or intoxicating effect, and whether the factual information about the strength of the drink had been given undue emphasis.” Despite a warning label affixed to the neck of the bottle, ASA ruled that statements such as “THE WORLD’S STRONGEST BEER” and “SAY GOODBYE TO BORING BEER!” “contributed to the overall impression that the product might be preferred because of its claimed alcohol content or intoxicating effect.” Directing Brewmeister to remove the claims from its website, the agency asked the company to ensure that “future marketing communications did not place undue emphasis on the alcoholic strength of a product or imply that a drink may be preferred because of its alcohol content or intoxicating effect.”