Sale of Eight Beer Brands by Faltering Anheuser-Busch to Major Marijuana Drug Company Risks Diluting Regulations Leading to More Dangerous, Drinkable Drug Products

(WASHINGTON, DC) – Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), released the following statement today in response to Anheuser-Busch’s sale of eight of its brands including Shock Top, Blue Point, Breckenridge Brewery, Redhook Brewery and HiBall Energy, among others, to marijuana company Tilray Brands:

“Anheuser-Busch may need a lifeline after the Bud Light fiasco, but offloading these brands to a pot company will jumpstart efforts to significantly expand THC-laced drinks. Big marijuana is, and has always been, an addiction-for-profit corporate scheme. This is just the latest way these corporate behemoths will line their pockets at the expense of public health. 

“The sale to Tilray will give the company a massive infrastructure to attempt to inject these drugs into communities across the country. Marijuana-legal states should anticipate lobbying efforts to dilute existing THC and alcoholic beverage regulations to make room for this expanded market. 

“High-potency THC products produced from marijuana are already available in more forms than ever before, including candies and vape oils that can be virtually undetectable. That is leading to the highest use and addiction rates in history. More Americans are using THC drugs daily than using alcohol daily. Anheuser-Busch may be thinking about their shrinking bottom line and Tilray may be salivating over the profits, but creating a THC drink market would lead to more DUI deaths, more abuse, and more innocuous sounding products in the hands of young people. 

“The pot industry has consistently downplayed the mental and physical health impacts of their drug products, told Americans THC is medicine when it’s not approved to treat any ailment, and been deliberately dishonest about the societal costs associated with commercialized drug products. We are now expected to believe that Tilray won’t leverage this amplified market presence in the alcohol industry to lobby for expansion of THC products to their drinks. It’s laughable and insulting. 

“The Federal Trade Commission should block this sale on the grounds that it risks leading to expanded sales of a federally-illegal drug. Lawmakers and States Attorneys General should be on guard for a new push from this addiction-for-profit industry to open up a new market for liquid THC products.”