By now, you’ve heard that Wicked Weed was purchased by AB InBev and will soon be wrapped up into their High End portfolio. To put it lightly: people lost their mind. Reaction to the deal from the craft beer community was swift and often brutal. The North Carolina Brewer’s Guild stripped Wicked Weed of their voting rights within the organization. Two other independent breweries cancelled collaborations with WW (Jester King and Black Project Spontaneous and Wild Ales), while some stores claimed they would stop selling Wicked Weed’s beer. Meanwhile, more than 50 breweries have dropped out of Wicked Weed’s impending Funkatorium Invitational, a sour beer fest where the profits go to a local charity.
It seems as if almost every notable brewery felt the need to chime in on the acquisition via social media (Sierra Nevada simply posted a picture of one of their six-pack holders that said “still family owned and operated”). Maybe the only craft brewery that was psyched about Wicked Weed’s announcement was Lagunitas, which announced almost simultaneously that Heineken would purchase the remaining 50% of their company. Nobody seemed to notice because of all of the Wicked Weed outrage.
And the number of breweries craft beer purists are going to probably (maybe) try to avoid is only set to grow. Since establishing the High End portfolio in 2015, AB InBev has gone on a spending spree; they now own 10 craft breweries (as well as a cidery and hard seltzer maker). Curious about which breweries are owned by Anheuser Busch? Check out the gallery to see the full list.