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New York Daily News: Beer sold in 77-packs has Maryland's comptroller accusing Anheuser-Busch of promoting binge drinking
October 17, 2018
Beer sold in 77-packs around one college campus is causing more than a little brew-haha, er, brouhaha.
Maryland’s chief financial officer is accusing Anheuser-Busch of promoting binge drinking to college students thanks to its limited time 77-packs of Natural Light beer that were sold in stores in College Park, Maryland. The city is home to the University of Maryland.
“They’re obviously promoting binge drinking by young people,” Maryland comptroller Peter Franchot said, according to CBS affiliate WUSA9.
Natural Light, a reduced-calorie pilsner launched by Anheuser-Busch in 1977, announced on Twitter on Oct. 5 that it would be selling the 77-packs for a short time only in College Park to celebrate its creation year.
Franchot, who has advocated for locally made craft beers to promote job growth in Maryland, is also calling for an investigation into large brewing companies bribing Maryland legislators with campaign contributions and favors, the news outlet reports.
“Corporate beer manufacturers claim to care about the public health impacts of alcohol, but the message they send by selling a 77-pack of beer designed to look like a keg in a college town shows they care more about their bottom line than the negative impacts of binge drinking,” Alan Brody, a spokesman for the Maryland comptroller, told the Daily News.
Brody added that details on a potential investigation are still coming together.
Binge drinking on college campuses is common for as many as 40% of students, according to a study in the August volume of the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. The study included a sample of nearly 300 students and defined binge drinking as when women consume at least four drinks in a two-hour time frame and men have at least five drinks in that same time frame.
The study found that changes in the students’ physical environment, like reducing exposure to alcohol, would help curtail binge drinking.