A-B Offers a New Malt Liquor Hurricane Brand Enters High-Octane Market

By Robert Manor Of the Post-Dispatch | St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO), May 1, 1996 | Go to article overview

A-B Offers a New Malt Liquor Hurricane Brand Enters High-Octane Market


Robert Manor Of the Post-Dispatch, St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)


Anheuser-Busch is rolling out Hurricane, its newest entry in the market for high-octane malt liquor.

Hurricane Malt Liquor, now going on sale in the St. Louis area, joins another recent entry, Michelob Malt, and A-B's established King Cobra Malt Liquor.

Like all malt liquors, Hurricane packs more alcohol than regular beers.

It contains 5.9 percent alcohol by volume, 23 percent more than the company's flagship Budweiser brand and the same as King Cobra. Michelob Malt is a touch stronger at 6 percent.

Anheuser-Busch says it hopes the two new brands will join with King Cobra to gain a larger share of the malt liquor category.

King Cobra is the nation's No. 4 malt liquor. That's an unusually weak position for Anheuser-Busch, which prides itself on its dominance of the beer market.

Malt liquor is one of the few segments of the beer industry that is growing, but it remains a minor part of the industry.

Less than 5 percent of the brews sold in the country are malt liquor, a share about the same size as microbrews.

And Anheuser-Busch has just 9 percent of the malt liquor market, so King Cobra is a vanishingly small brand compared to its other products.

Prevost Foushee, brand manager for A-B's malt liquors, said Hurricane, Michelob Malt and King Cobra "give us an excellent product mix to offer consumers, and together, they will make us a major player in the segment. …

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