Budweiser’s Vying to Become Utah’s Official State Beer

The brand held a funeral last year for 3.2% alcoholic beverages

three-pack of budweiser cans

Budweiser wants to take its relationship with Utah to a whole new level by giving it a customized beer can and becoming its official state beer.

Budweiser released the design for the new can, which features iconic Utah landmarks like Arches National Park, the Great Salt Lake and the State Capitol building.

The can represents “the continuation of Budweiser’s presence in the state and support for some truly die-hard Bud fans,” said Monica Rustgi, vp of marketing for Budweiser. “This campaign is a rallying cry that all Utahns can get behind to bring something no other state can claim—Budweiser as its official state beer.”

The brand also released a spot promoting the campaign, which stars Jed, an awkward, good-natured Utahn making the case for Budweiser as the state’s official beer. After all, explains Jed, it already has an official state fruit, rock and flower.

The ad, created by VaynerMedia, is over two minutes long. It has a quirky, homemade quality to it and will air only in Utah.

Last year, Utah’s state legislature made it legal to buy 5% alcohol by volume (ABV) beer at grocery and convenience stores, overturning a prohibition era rule that capped the alcohol content at 4% ABV, or 3.2% alcohol by weight. The law went into effect on Nov. 1, 2019, and the Budweiser Clydesdales were there to celebrate on the preceding eve, leading a Halloween-themed funeral procession for the old 3.2% beer.

But there’s a catch. Budweiser will only make the Utah can if it gets enough traction on social media. If the hashtag #Bud4Utah is tagged or retweeted at least 84,899 times—a number that also represents the total square mileage of Utah—by Sep. 13, Utah gets its can. And after such a prolonged prohibitionary history, who else deserves it more?

The shirts are for sale at Budweiser’s online store.

Should fans succeed in spreading the message sufficiently far and wide, the Budweiser Clydesdales will head back to Utah next year to deliver the first case of customized beer cans.

Budweiser also released a T-shirt that fans can buy from the brand’s online store to sport their support for the cause. The election-themed T-shirt has a big “Bud for Utah’s State Beer” message on the back and urges fans to “Vote using #Bud4Utah.” A full slate of merchandize will roll out in the coming days, including stickers, glassware, coasters, pins and table tents.

@klundster kathryn.lundstrom@adweek.com Kathryn Lundstrom is Adweek's breaking news reporter based in Austin.