Bud Light controversy causes glass bottle plant shut down, leaving more than 600 unemployed

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 04: A view of rainbow bottles of Bud Light during the 30th Annual GLAAD Media Awards New York at New York Hilton Midtown on May 04, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for GLAAD)
(Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for GLAAD)

OAN’s Noah Herring
11:27 AM – Monday, July 3, 2023

A glass bottling company will shut down two of its locations, causing more than 600 layoffs, due to the botched Bud Light campaign that featured transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney. 


The Ardagh Group, a global glass producer that has a contract with Anheuser-Busch, announced that it will be closing its North Carolina and Louisiana plant locations in July, leaving around 645 employees jobless, according to WRAL. 

The bottling company did not reveal a specific reason for the shutdowns, but an investigation by WRAL reportedly revealed that the plants are struggling because of the tanking Bud Light sales amidst the national boycott due to the controversial partnership celebrating Dylan Mulvaney’s “365 days of Girlhood.” 

Numerous longtime employees at the plant, based in Wilson, North Carolina, said that most of their business came from making bottles for Budweiser and Bud Light. Employees who were laid off reported that a manager at the plant last Wednesday revealed to them that the boycott and low sales were forcing them to shut down. 

“Because of Budweiser no longer selling the bottles, they no longer needed our product,” said David Williams, Machine Repair Mechanic.

Bud Light sales reportedly fell 24.3% during May after the nationwide boycott. Despite attempts to alleviate the backlash, such as discounting beers and offering rebates that make the drink “basically free to the consumers” in some markets, the brand has purportedly lost billions of dollars in market value. 

Modelo Especial also passed Bud Light as the No. 1-selling beer brand on a dollar basis for the four-week and single-week period ending June 3rd

Mulvaney has since attacked the beverage company he worked with for prompting an influx of backlash, which the influencer described as “more transphobia than I could’ve ever imagined.”

“I was waiting for the brand to reach out to me, but they never did,” Mulvaney said, claiming: “I’ve been scared to leave my house.”

“For a company to hire a trans person and then not publicly stand by them is worse than not hiring a trans person at all,” the influencer added. 

Anheuser-Busch released a statement in response saying that it is “committed to the programs and partnerships” they have created with the LGBTQ community. 

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