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CHICAGO -- MillerCoors, the Chicago-based joint venture between Molson Coors and SABMiller, is discontinuing its MGD 64 Lemonade. The limited-time offering launched this spring and was expected to build on the company's success in low-calorie beer and pique the interest of female drinkers, according to a report by the Chicago Tribune. The company had planned to sell the beer through Labor Day.
"Winning in beer requires testing the bounds of the market with innovation," Ed McBrien, president of sales, wrote in an e-mail Tuesday to MillerCoors' distributors. "With that commitment, however, comes a recognition that not every innovation will succeed. That is the case with MGD 64 Lemonade, so we have decided to discontinue this line extension."
The brewer plans to buy back outstanding cases from distributors and "where legal, we will cover destruction costs up to $2.50 per case." The product is an extension of the MGD 64 base brand, which the company said it sticking by, while "asking distributors to redouble their efforts" behind the low-calorie beer, which competes with Anheuser-Busch's Bud Select 55.
MGD 64 Lemonade was billed as "64 calories of crisp, refreshing beer with a lemonade twist,” according to AdAge. It was targeted toward 24- to 34-year-old females. MGD Lemonade is classified as a "flavored beer," not a flavored malt beverage, because it "maintains the brewed characteristics of MGD 64 with the complementary flavor of lemonade, [which is] not [the] defining flavor," MillerCoors said when it was launched.
"We plan to continue to bring new and innovative ways to spark growth in this critical segment," McBrien wrote in his e-mail.