Crafters Union Bets Football Fans Will Pair Chicken Wings With Canned Wine

by Rudy Sanchez on 07/11/2019 | 2 Minute Read

There's nothing wrong with tearing into a gloriously buttery chard' while watching the latest football match.

That's what they call them, right?

While beer is usually more associated with football than wine, Constellation Brands, owners of Corona and Svedka vodka, believes that gridiron fans will drink wine if it comes in a can, announcing a sponsorship deal with the NFL to promote their Woodbridge wine and new canned wine line, Crafters Union.

According to William Newlands, president and CEO of Constellation Brands, canned wine “is the perfect format for football games and tailgating.” Newlands might be onto something; according to research firm Nielsen, sales of canned wine grew 77.5% year over year. Indeed, heavy glass bottles, corkscrews, and enough glasses for everyone is a lot to lug around. Cans of wine are lightweight, single-serve and ready-to-drink, and depending on the kind of wine, doesn’t even need to go into the cooler.

Editorial photograph
Editorial photograph

The Crafters Union label makes it clear that this isn’t a lager and, yes, it's indeed vino available in three varieties—Pinot Grigio, Red, and Rosé. All three cans sport nature-themed labels, the Pinot is a mostly blue floral and frog design, the Red is black, with broad leaves, snakes and red flowers, and the Rosé label is softer, dominated by light tones.

Constellation isn’t the only big beverage company eyeing the canned wine market. AB InBev has announced that they have purchased a controlling stake in Babe Wine, known as the maker of popular White Girl Rosé and co-founded by Josh Ostrovsky, the social media personality otherwise known as “The Fat Jewish."

These moves come as beer sales continue to slide, with domestic and light beers hit the hardest. Besides investing in Ready-To-Drink and canned wine, beer makers like Constellation and AB InBev are also offsetting the decline in beer sales with low-alcohol beers and cannabis-infused non-alcoholic beers. Constellation Brands, which owns Corona and Modelo, invested $4 billion into Canopy Growth, the Canadian cannabis company.

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