24 February 2011

When is light ridiculous? When it’s Select 55.

This rant is long overdue.

I was having a Facebook chat with a friend yesterday who happened to have a birthday and I suggested he do something for himself since we rarely spoil ourselves and this seemed like as good a time as any. He replied that a light beer was on the agenda and it made me think about how crazy America is when it comes to food.

Not only are we the fattest country in the world with fully 34% of Americans now officially falling into the obese category, we are also the nation most obsessed with diet products, pills, cosmetic surgery, cleanses, and the like.

ASIDE – obese is not just some colloquial/slang term that means you could stand to lose a few pounds, it is a medical condition that means you are in trouble and it’s time to see your doctor!

But that is another topic for another post, today is just about light beer.

First there was regular old light beer, think Bud Light. This has 110 calories and 6.6 g of carbohydrates. Then things started to go awry.

At some point marketing department realized that selling us beer that costs less to make AND sells for the same price would be a huge hit with the sales department and boy were they right. All you have to do is spin something as ‘healthy’ and people come running. Enter the era of our-light-beer-is-lighter-than-your-light-beer. This is also known as the era of beer that tastes like, well, water.

The first foray into this was Miller Light. The slogan was, “Less filling! Tastes great!” and although the adds were hilarious they did not make up for what was/is pretty damn light beer and marginal at best.

Miller Light – 96 calories, 3.2 g of carbohydrates

Michelob Ultra was the next to give it a go and if you watch one of their adds you would think they had a lock on some sort of miracle fountain of youth formula but really it was just the same as what was already out there. Plus they spent a boat load in order to get everyone’s favorite Tour de France winner and cancer survivor to endorse it so it must be great, right? Oh by the way Lance, comeback 2.0 is over, you just retired. Again.

Next up was MGD 64 which –surprisingly – contains 64 calories and 2.4 g of carbohydrates. As a bonus it also had half the alcohol as the other light beers. they had to cut the calories somehow after all.

Finally we get to the winner (loser?) – Budweiser Select 55.  55 calories and 1.9 g of carbohydrates.

It makes me wonder, at what point in this progression did said beverage stop being recognizable as beer? Because the last incarnation of this drink evolution certainly is not.

What’s next, will somebody start selling beer in a skinny can like this?


Because as we all know, if the can you drink from is skinny, so are you.

ANOTHER ASIDE – remember these cigarettes? Same idea.

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