6 million bottles of Bud recalled

A-B says problem in Europe with bottles, not beer

Sept 2, 1999 - Anheuser-Busch is recalling nearly six million bottles of Budweiser beer in 12 European countries because the bottles may break when opened. All twist-off top beer bottles in Spain, Portugal, Denmark, Sweden, Cyprus, Malta, Belgium, Netherlands, Latvia, Germany, and Switzerland were recalled, as well as many bottles in France.


Budweiser bottles sold in the United States are not affected.

The bottles recalled were manufactured in Spain or Portugal, and filled at the company's Spanish brewery. The bottles are marked as being best consumed before Aug. 15, 2000.

The company said that the top of some of the bottles is slightly larger than it should be, increasing the risk of breakage when they are opened. The company said it was alerted to the problem through customer complaints. The 12 countries affected account for 6 percent of the company's European sales, which are concentrated in Britain and Ireland.

The move was the second beverage recall in Europe this summer, following the Coca-Cola recall that originated in Belgium and France. Although Coca-Cola saw both its image and profits dented by a recall of soft drinks, A-B said it was confident its sales would not suffer.

"Because we moved so quickly to pull the product, we'll be respected for that," said William McNulty, A-B's European director. The company has been careful to point out the problem is with the glass supplier, not the beer.

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