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    Anheuser-Busch Taps the Booming Cider Market

    Stella Artois Cidre makes its debut today in 26 states.

    ST. LOUIS -- Anheuser-Busch introduced Stella Artois Cidre to the surging U.S. cider market today. The crisp, distinctive European-style cider is made with apples hand-picked from wine-growing regions in North and South America.

    Stella Artois Cidre is initially available in 26 U.S. states, with further expansion possible in 2014.

    “Stella Artois Cidre is designed to be savored and is very different from sweeter, domestic U.S. ciders,” said Adam Oakley, vice president of import, craft and specialty brands at St. Louis-based Anheuser-Busch. The product “has the potential to change people’s perceptions of cider here, offering a refreshing alternative to white wine.”

    The cider category in the United States is becoming one of the fastest-growing beverage categories, seeing 110-percent growth. Early growth in the category was driven primarily by sweeter, domestic ciders balanced with consumer demand for drier, premium European-style ciders, according to the brewer. Stella Artois Cidre is aimed at meeting the growing demand for premium ciders with a more complex taste profile.

    “Cider drinkers are now approaching cider with a sophistication similar to that of wine drinkers,” noted Marc Stroobandt, a Belgian master sommelier. “To capture their interest, ciders certainly need to be refreshing and savory, but people also want something a little more complex and distinct, which Stella Artois Cidre offers.”

    At 4.5 percent alcohol by volume (ABV), Stella Artois Cidre is available in two packaging options: four-packs of 12-ounce bottles and single 24-ounce bottles.

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