What the Foster's/SABMiller deal teaches us, besides the fact SABMiller suddenly likes its beer in big-boy cans, is that pegging national identity to a beer is about as effective as linking it to a car or any other mass-produced product. To provide some idea of just how much of a flag-waiving fool's errand assigning a beer to a country can be, TheStreet provides the following list of beers, their country of origin and the home country of the beer behemoths that actually benefit from their sales:
National identity: Australian
World headquarters: London, England (SABMiller)
National identity: Irish
World headquarters: London, England (Diageo)
National identity: Polish
World headquarters: Amsterdam, Netherlands (Heineken International)
National identity: Italian
World headquarters: London, England (SABMiller) Red Stripe
National identity: Jamaican
World headquarters: London, England (Diageo) Spaten
National identity: German
World headquarters: Leuven, Belgium (A-B Inbev) Bass Ale
National identity: English
World headquarters: Leuven, Belgium (A-B Inbev) McEwan's
National identity: Scottish
World headquarters: Amsterdam, Belgium (Heineken International) Pilsner Urquell
National identity: Czech
World headquarters: London, England (SABMiller) Labatt
National identity: Canadian
World headquarters: Leuven, Belgium (A-B Invev) Brahma
National identity: Brazilian
World headquarters: Leuven, Belgium (A-B Invev) Tusker
National identity: Kenyan
World headquarters: London, England (Diageo) Mendicino Brewing Co.
National identity: American (Californian, to be more precise)
World headquarters: Bangalore, India (United Breweries Group) -- Written by Jason Notte in Boston.
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