Tuesday, December 29, 2009

America Has Given Up Its Beer!

I have something that has been bothering me quite some time. With all of our American owned businesses either moving their operations to foreign land or, even worse, selling out to a foreign company, it weighs on me more and more that pretty soon there won't be any American owned or American made products left. And that is so sad. We used to make products and start businesses here because it was part of the "American Dream". Of course the companies and stockholders wanted to make a profit but they also had pride in what they made. A high quality product at a fair price. But now it seems that the only goal of most companies is to see who they can sell themselves to at the highest price possible. Sure the American owners of these companies are getting filthy rich but they are also selling the rest of us out. Once they make their millions they could care less about what happens to their product or where its made.

To make my point, try and go one whole day without using any product that is made in another country. Most of you won't even be able to leave your home and start the day without using something not made in the U.S. Look at the labels on the pillows and sheets you just were using. Made in the USA? I doubt it. And the clothes and shoes you are getting ready to wear for the day...where were they made? How about the coffee maker and toaster you normally use?
Your blow-dryer, hair curler, razor, toothbrush, brush and comb? OK, let's say you made it out of the house without using anything foreign made. What type of car are you driving? An American made car you say? That's a good start but where were most of the small parts and electronics made? Mexico or Canada. But, hey, I'll let you have credit for that since at least the profits stay on American soil.
Forget the telephone, computer, printer, television, radio, MP3 player, iPod, cell phone, etc. All foreign made. I could go on and on but you get the point. Most everything we use is either foreign made or, if it is made here, foreign owned. And forget having a beer for lunch!

Which brings me to my real point of writing this. Almost all the beer you drink is not made by an American owned brewery! Yes, all that beer at a baseball or football game is foreign owned. Even with names like, "American Ale" or "Red, White and Blue" and with a beautifully adorned label of an American eagle, they are foreign owned. Budweiser, Miller, Coors, Pabst, Stroh's, all sold out to foreign companies. And I quit buying them! It is my "last straw", my first foothold in my stance against buying foreign owned or made products.

OK, I can hear you now, screaming that I don't practice what I preach. Of course, like everyone else I am forced to buy and use foreign made/owned products. But when there are options to buy entirely, or mostly made US products I try to choose them. I buy only American "made" cars, while knowing that some of the parts are not made here. I do read labels and try to buy American made clothes (almost impossible). I do pick the product that is American made if I have the choice. And when it comes to beer, I have a choice.
If you thought the beer you are drinking was American owned because you grew up knowing that it was, you better do some research. Almost ALL of the beer you drink is foreign owned. Just Google the brand you drink and you will find it's true owner. In a blog written by Travis Daub for ForeignPolicy.com, he writes:

Coors, Miller, and now Anheuser-Busch are all owned by foreign conglomerates. So where can a patriotic guy find an all-American brew these days? Believe it or not, Pabst Brewing Company is now the largest American-owned brewer. But Pabst doesn't even brew its own beer anymore. All 29 Pabst beers, from Schlitz, to Lone Star to Colt 45 to the legendary Pabst Blue Ribbon are outsourced to SAB Miller, based in South Africa. Next on the list comes Boston Beer Company, which counterintuitively bottles its famous Sam Adams lager in Pennsylvania. Third is D.G. Yuengling and Son Inc., known far and wide as America's oldest brewery, operating in Pottsville, PA since 1829. Here's the full list of America's top American-owned breweries according to the Brewer's Association: 1. Pabst Brewing Co. 2. Boston Beer Co. 3. D.G. Yuengling and Son Inc. 4. Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. 5. New Belgium Brewing Co. Inc. 6. High Falls Brewing Co. 7. Spoetzl Brewery 8. Widmer Brothers Brewing Group 9. Redhook Ale Brewery 10. Pyramid Breweries Inc

So, you see, they are all gone. And let me say that I would remove Pabst from that list! They may still be an American owned beer company but they outsource ALL of their beer to Miller, a South African owned company. My list would start with the Boston Beer Co. and Yuengling and stop! I consider them the only two mostly nationwide beer companies. Yes, there are dozens and dozens of smaller breweries as mentioned in Daub's list including all the micro-brewers in the US, but I consider Boston Beer & Yuengling the two largest and oldest of them all. And that's the only beer I buy!

You're starting to yell at me again aren't you? I said "buy". If I'm at a function or offered a beer at someone's house and it's not "American owned" I don't offend the host by not drinking it nor do I go off on a torrent about it being a foreign owned beer hiding behind an American made label. I accept it and drink it but I usually will politely ask if they have any "American beer". Once they smile and say that their beer is an American beer I give them a 25-word or less synopsis of why it is not. Of course they usually wander off with an attempt at a smile and they don't seem to offer me another beer the rest of the evening.

So there you have it. Another American product that sold out. I'm really afraid to go to the grocery now and read the label of an apple pie.....

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