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Faux Canada

According to an article in today’s Montreal Gazette, Canadians are increasingly looking to buy better tasting beer. And like their American cousins, the big Canadian breweries are flooding the market with faux or stealth microbrews in order to compete with craft brewers. With these faux craft beers, they’re trying to fool customers into thinking they’re getting just want they want, a beer that’s been hand-crafted to taste great.

Labatt has a line called Alexander Keith, named for an early brewer in Nova Scotia. MolsonCoors, likewise, has Rickard’s family of brands. Both Rickard’s and Keith’s are listed on their respective company websites and acknowledged as their brands. Alexander Keith’s own website does disclose that it’s a Labatt brand, but only in the legal stuff like “terms of use.” They certainly don’t go out of their way to associate themselves with the parent company.

An interesting parallel, though the article goes on to discuss tarrifs between provinces and what their removal will mean for small players. I don.t know enough about the market to form an opinion, but it’s an interesting read.

Alexander Keith’s IPA, owned by Labatt; and Rickard’s Red, owned by MolsonCoors.

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