Photo courtesy of Randy Heinitz| Flickr
Last month a California home brewer, Evan Parent, filed a lawsuit against MillerCoors for marketing Blue Moon as a craft beer.
Blue Moon, a popular Belgian white beer, is fourth on the list of fastest growing beer brands in America according to USA Today. They are owned by MillerCoors, one of the largest beer corporations in America.
Parent claims in his suit that MillerCoors has “mislead the public” by branding Blue Moon as a craft beer, which does not fit under the definition of craft beer. Since they are marketing it as a craft beer, Blue Moon also gets premium pricing that other craft beers get. Parent looks to have an amount paid in “damages for misleading advertising and unfair competition,” says the Huffington Post.
According to the Brewers Association’s website the definition of an American craft brewer is small, independent, and traditional. By this they mean that the brewer produces approximately 6 million barrels or less of beer annually, less than 25 percent of the brewer is owned/controlled, and their beers’ flavors come from a traditional way of brewing, according to the Brewers Association.
It is unclear as to how the lawsuit will go. According to FOX17’s website MillerCoors released a statement saying, “ There are countless definitions of craft, none of which are legal definitions.”
It’s interesting to see this come up in the news because just a few months ago in January at the Big Philly Beer Fest I noticed Blue Moon was present. It made me wonder if they were considered a craft beer, as the rest of the fest was full of craft brewers and craft beer fans form across the country. I wasn’t sure Blue Moon fit in yet there it was, the first stand when you walked in. I’ll be following this lawsuit to see how it turns out, stay tuned for more updates as the case progresses.