Why Costco Unleashing the ‘Death Star’ on Bud Light Is Even Worse Than You Think

July 14, 2023 in News by RBN Staff


Source: PJ Media


It’s the logo that Costco shoppers dread: when the “Death Star” appears next to their favorite item, indicating that the discount retail giant won’t restock once current inventory has sold out. Just this year, the Death Star has appeared on Filthy brand blue cheese olives, Kinder’s organic toasted onion dip mix, and Jonny Pops chocolate dipped strawberry pops.

Now the Death Star has been spotted adorning the price signs for Bud Light, which was the most popular beer in America back in the olden days of […checks notes…] a couple months ago.

If you think that’s a bad sign for Bud Light sales, you’re wrong. It’s much, much worse.

I first became aware of Bud Light’s Alderaan-like fate on Wednesday evening, when my friend and former RedState colleague Kira Davis tweeted that “they’re not even selling Bud Light at my local Costco anymore. Don’t know when it stopped but I’ve noticed it’s not in stock anymore.” Kira was reporting from southern California, which, as I noted on Instapundit earlier today, “isn’t exactly overrun with conservatives.”

Sure enough, sharp Costco buyers have been sharing photos on social media of the Death Star menacing Bud Light signs across the nation.

The troubled beer brand has quickly gone from “we can’t give this stuff away” to “a discount retail giant won’t even give it shelf space.”

That’s all the stuff you might already know. Now let’s get to the part where things go from very bad to much, much worse.

According to Investopedia, Costco has 111 million members who pay between $60 and $120 a year for the privilege of shopping their discount items. The average US member, believe it or not, is “a 39-year-old college-educated Asian-American woman who earns more than $125,000 per year.”

Recommended: Bud Light Begs, ‘Please Drink Our Beer Again, You Oafish Hicks’

These are not the mouth-breathing, knuckle-dragging morons the press would have you believe are the only ones put off by Bug Light’s newly woke marketing and outrageous sense of superiority over their own customers.

What Costco’s Death Star tells me is that the unofficial Bud Light boycott extends far beyond people like you and me who are deeply steeped in politics in ways that Normal-Americans aren’t. If the broad middle of America isn’t buying the stuff anymore, at least not in numbers sufficient to maintain Costco’s sharp eye for market trends and good deals, then parent company AB-InBev has dug itself a deeper hole than most of us imagined.

I’d also add that once a brand has lost shelf space, it’s very difficult to win back. Going even further, customers can’t buy what isn’t made available. Costco buyers who never even heard of Bud Light’s marketing fail with He Who Shall Not Be Named will stop buying Bud Light, too, just because it isn’t there — but some other discount light beer is.

If there is such a thing as a death spiral for a brand, we might be witnessing it.

Costco might decide to discontinue items due to poor consumer sales, or because they can no longer get a volume purchase discount big enough to suit their value-minded customers, or maybe because they just can’t get enough anymore to fill the shelves.

A fourth possibility just occurred to me: Maybe Costco HQ just doesn’t want to deal with the headache of a brand that’s turned toxic.

P.S. I had a run-in last month with a commenter named “Mercysdad.com” who insisted that, “Given their market if [sic] trump fans and WWE fanatics (but I repeat myself) All they really need to do is cut the price. They will have market share again in no time” because “Bubba will get over it fairly quickly, and go on to something else shiny.”

How’s that workin’ out for ya?

Stephen Green

Steve launched VodkaPundit on a well-planned whim in 2002, and has been with PJ Media since its launch in 2005. He served as one of the hosts of PJTV, a pioneer in internet broadcasting. He also cohosts “Right Angle” with Bill Whittle and Scott Ott at BillWhittle.com. He lives with his wife and sons in the wooded hills of Monument, Colorado, where he enjoys the occasional adult beverage.