Asahi to buy Fullers

Discussion in 'Beer News & Releases' started by Hanglow, Jan 25, 2019.

  1. Hanglow

    Hanglow Crusader (767) Feb 18, 2012 United Kingdom (Scotland)

  2. Hoppsbabo

    Hoppsbabo Champion (871) Jan 29, 2012 United Kingdom (England)
    Trader

    Ugh!
     
    steveh and Hanglow like this.
  3. Hanglow

    Hanglow Crusader (767) Feb 18, 2012 United Kingdom (Scotland)

    Yeah, another one bites the dust
     
  4. jesskidden

    jesskidden Meyvn (1,387) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    In most (all?) cases a result of spin-off deals resulting from the ABInBev takeover of SABMiller, Asahi also owns Meantime in the UK, as well as Peroni, Grolsch, Pilsner Urquell, Topvar, Ursus, Dreher, Piwowarska and Baltika.
    see Asahi Overseas - Europe

    Measured by volume, their 2018 Factbook put Asahi at #7 worldwide with a barrelage of 5.9 Million KL (~50 Million US beer barrels), behind ABInBev, Heineken, China Resources, Carlsberg, Molson Coors and Tsingtao.
     
    #4 jesskidden, Jan 25, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2019
  5. rgordon

    rgordon Champion (883) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    I know it's a bit of a different circumstance, but I hope Fuller doesn't go the way of Young's.
     
    DonObiWan, eppCOS, TongoRad and 2 others like this.
  6. hopsputin

    hopsputin Meyvn (1,405) Apr 1, 2012 New Jersey

  7. chipawayboy

    chipawayboy Disciple (399) Oct 26, 2007 Massachusetts

    Wow this is sad. It wasn’t long ago that a trip to London meant mostly visiting a Young’s or Fuller’s pub. Both now gone the way of sell out. All in all the London beer scene is better than it’s ever been so I guess this is part of the price of progress.
    Visited the Fullers brewery 5 years ago outside London and the place was a gorgeous unspoiled museum to UK brewing...that will probably survive for awhile hopefully... still love a few of the classic Fullers pubs — anyone been to the Churchill Arms over by Notting Hill? Amazing spot w/so much history and great Thai food to go along w/ the real ale. Anybody have any other favorite Fuller’s pubs they’ll think twice about visiting now?
     
    NeroFiddled likes this.
  8. THANAT0PSIS

    THANAT0PSIS Crusader (771) Aug 3, 2010 Wisconsin
    Trader

    This is so depressing. Fullers is one of the only really great English beers we can get in my area, and now I'll never get to the legendary pubs I've heard so much about over the years.
     
    lastmango likes this.
  9. jesskidden

    jesskidden Meyvn (1,387) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    Why not? The pubs will still exist and under the same Fuller management while, at this point, the beers will remain the same, brewed at the same brewery under Asahi ownership, and continue to be served at the Fuller-owned pubs.

    While it hasn't been that long, not much has changed at the other European breweries owned by Asahi that I've read of.
     
    #9 jesskidden, Jan 25, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2019
  10. THANAT0PSIS

    THANAT0PSIS Crusader (771) Aug 3, 2010 Wisconsin
    Trader

    Let's hope!
     
  11. jesskidden

    jesskidden Meyvn (1,387) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    Yeah, well, maybe you should start looking for airfares to Gatwick, just in case :wink: (well, as soon as they start paying the US air traffic controllers again).

    Of course, last time I was pub-crawling in the UK, the BIG SIX dominated the market (but not the pubs we favored) and they're all gone - Allied, Bass, Courage, S&N, Watney and Whitbread. Tho' even a few them still did make some fine cask ales and bottled beers.
     
    THANAT0PSIS likes this.
  12. MNAle

    MNAle Meyvn (1,074) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    Coming soon to a bottle shop near you:

    [​IMG]
     
  13. jeebeel

    jeebeel Initiate (160) Jun 17, 2003 Texas

    I'm curious whether any of our UK BA's saw this coming...
     
  14. chipawayboy

    chipawayboy Disciple (399) Oct 26, 2007 Massachusetts

    If you live on the east coast Norwegian Air has absurdly low pices into Gatwidk. I paid less than $300 round trip from Boston last fall and I think prices are even lower at the moment. Given the strength of the dollar to the pound - it may be the best point in modern times to hit up an extended London /UK crawl. I highly recommend a tri city crawl London to York to Edinburgh over a week or so time. A straight shot north/south w/ a couple hour train ride each leg — and three great but unique pub/real ale cultures. I’ve done that tour three times and am thinking of making it four this year. Cheers to real ale.
     
    Witherby, JackHorzempa, ecpho and 5 others like this.
  15. Hoppsbabo

    Hoppsbabo Champion (871) Jan 29, 2012 United Kingdom (England)
    Trader

    No! But perhaps the signs were there when I started noticing London Pride everywhere in Asia a few years ago. All over the place in Japan. I guess Asahi are going to push it more in China
     
    Bitterbill and jeebeel like this.
  16. hopsputin

    hopsputin Meyvn (1,405) Apr 1, 2012 New Jersey

    I was a fan of The Red Lion as well.
     
    chipawayboy likes this.
  17. lastmango

    lastmango Zealot (521) Dec 11, 2014 Pennsylvania

    I am going to say something that some will not agree with. Sometimes, a brand is not just about quality, it is about allure. One year at the Outer Banks on vacation, I bought some Red Stripe thinking that if I could not be in the Caribbean, at least I could drink a beer like I was there. As I was texting a coworker about my drink, I turned the bottle around and read the label. It said . . . brewed in Latrobe, PA, not far from where I live. Totally ruined the moment.

    When I want an English beer, I would rather it be brewed by an English company because it is the closest that I can get to being there. I do not want a Japanese company controlling an English brewery.

    Frankly, I detest these conglomerates buying up the best. Hopefully, Asahi will not ruin Fullers. But unfortunately . . . the allure is gone.
     
    scream, Junior, Hanglow and 2 others like this.
  18. jesskidden

    jesskidden Meyvn (1,387) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    But previous to being brewed in Latrobe (as well as in Canada, by Moosehead), when it was brewed in Jamaica, the brewery, Desnoes & Geddes, was majority-owned by an Irish and later a UK-based company - first Guinness and then, after their merger with Grand Met, Diageo. You had no problem with that?

    Today, the Red Stripe sold in the US is again brewed in Jamaica, because of a coroporate decision by the new majority stockholder, the Dutch company Heineken.

    Oh, and complicating things even more - that Latrobe brewery in western PA was for several decades or so (late 1980s-2006) owned by the Canadian brewer, Labatt, which in the 1990s was purchased by a big Belgian brewer called Interbrew (gee, whatever became of them?).

    And, a decade earlier than Labatt's purchase of Rolling Rock, that "Jamaican" beer Red Stripe was being brewed on the other side of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia...:grin:
    [​IMG]
     
    #18 jesskidden, Jan 25, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2019
  19. MNAle

    MNAle Meyvn (1,074) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    Hence, the lawsuit trolls who claim they were deceived ('cause they didn't read the label until they decided to sue... ).

    Asahi was sued a few years ago because their "Japanese" beer was brewed in Canada (IIRC).

    IDK what became of that lawsuit...
     
    Bitterbill likes this.
  20. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (6,348) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Premium Trader

    You mean like Kona brewed at Widmer and Red Hook?
    Though I don't know or remember if there was a lawsuit involved in that case.
     
  21. rgordon

    rgordon Champion (883) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    I always preferred the Canadian Fosters to the older Australian export. And many years ago the Sam Adams brewed at Strohs in Winston- Salem (old Schlitz brewery) was letter perfect. Still, Fullers, to my mind, is English and only English......
     
    Bitterbill likes this.
  22. RaulMondesi

    RaulMondesi Poo-Bah (1,666) Dec 11, 2006 California
    Trader

    Raul was in London many moons ago (2007), and I believe the pub I most frequented was called The Mitre. My first pour was a Fullers London Pride on cask. Brilliant.
     
    scream, hopsputin and chipawayboy like this.
  23. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (6,348) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Premium Trader

    Yeah, the Fosters in the steel cans imported from Australia were the most metallic tasting beers I've ever encountered.
     
    rgordon likes this.
  24. rgordon

    rgordon Champion (883) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    As a young fellow I on occasion gagged on the big oil can. Even being the only beer sometimes didn't save it...
     
    Bitterbill likes this.
  25. zid

    zid Savant (955) Feb 15, 2010 New York

    Well... Roger Protz said: "Completely dumbfounded to learn this morning that Fullers is selling the Griffin brewery and all its brands to Japanese brewer Asahi"
     
    jeebeel, bluejacket74 and Hanglow like this.
  26. Hanglow

    Hanglow Crusader (767) Feb 18, 2012 United Kingdom (Scotland)

    It took everyone by surprise I think, not even any other breweries saw it.Fullers had just recently bought Dark Star as well, which everyone thought was to make them more relevant to modern craft fans. But a deal of this size would have been in the works for quite some time and Asahi must have known about that deal too.

    There are only a few historic family owned breweries left, so even though I have no personal attachment to Fullers, it's s sad to them disappear.

    As for beer quality, if you look over time in the UK I cannot think of a single beer or brand that has been improved by a takeover at least from my point of view. I'm sure plenty of accountants can point to successes.... More recent ones are simply too recent to objectively assess.
     
    hopsputin, bluejacket74 and drtth like this.
  27. jesskidden

    jesskidden Meyvn (1,387) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    Sure about that? Don't recall Boston Beer Co. doing any contract-brewing at that Stroh brewery, though it was used by Pete's Brewing Co. Stroh didn't start contract-brewing for BBC until they bought Heileman in '96 and continued to fullfill their contract at Blitz-Weinhard, and then brewed SA brands at the Allentown (ex-Schaefer, now BBC) brewery for the east coast.

    Samuel Adams' brands did come out of the now-defunct Miller North Carolina brewery in Eden after Stroh left the industry in '99.

    BBC's contract-brewing bounced around like a pinball in the '90s into the early '00s - Pittsburgh, Blitz-Weinhard/Heileman, Matts, Genesee, Stroh, Pabst, Miller, Hudepohl-Schoenling (don't think I left anyone out :wink: but it's possible, including Stroh in W-S, NC).
     
  28. rgordon

    rgordon Champion (883) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    It certainly seemed to be well known. I heard this from many locals. I had no reason to not believe it.
     
    SunDevilBeer likes this.
  29. grantcty

    grantcty Initiate (116) Feb 17, 2008 Minnesota

    Good to read a bit of a positivity.

    As the article mentions, I too haven't noticed, or read anything about, a drop in quality of Pilsner Urquell since Asahi took over. Nor have I read any plans to have it brewed elsewhere.

    I doubt we'll see the Griffin brewery closing anytime soon.
     
    DiUr likes this.