Beer controversy vies with tractors at Commodity Classic trade show

-The Hagstrom Report

ORLANDO, Fla. — The Commodity Classic, the gathering of soybean, corn, wheat and sorghum growers, features one of the biggest farm equipment displays in the country, but this year the more than 8,000 attendees, including more than 4,000 farmers, are finding a message from Coors beer at their feet as they enter the trade show at the Orange County Convention Center.

“We’re proud of our ingredients … and the farmers who grow them,” says a large floor sign showing a combine in a corn field, the Coors signature snow-capped mountains, and a Coors Light can.

The message is clear: Coors is showing its love for corn farmers after Bud LIght ran a Superbowl commercial showing a barrel of corn syrup being delivered to the MillerCoors company.

The Bud Light “Know What’s In Your Beer” promotion advertises its ingredients as “Hops. Barley. Water. Rice. And No Corn Syrup,” and its website lists the ingredients for Miller Lite and Coors Light as including corn syrup.

The commercial is still the subject of much discussion in the corn industry. At a news conference Thursday, National Corn Growers Association President Lynn Chrisp noted that his members had had a hard year with low prices and trade problems, topped off by the beer commercial against their products.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue added to the dustup today when he noted at the end of this speech that a Superbowl commercial had talked about a product that comes from what some of the attendees are growing.

“They said they don’t use it any more. I don’t use theirs any more either,” Perdue said.