Summer may be over, but just because those backyard BBQs may be becoming less and less frequent, that doesn’t mean you have to stop kicking back with a cold brew when the mood strikes you. Beer is a year-round favorite and one of the most popular alcoholic beverages in the U.S. In fact, according to research from career resource site Zippia, of the 63 percent of U.S. adults who drink alcohol, 42 percent prefer beer over any other alcoholic beverage. With that in mind, Best Life set out to find the best-selling beer brand in the country.
To see which brews bring in the biggest dollars, we consulted Zippia and the drinks business, the leading global trade publication for the beverage industry, both of which used the most recently available data gathered by IRI, a Chicago-based market research firm. The figures used for this ranking represent retail sales data across the U.S. for the year 2020. Data for 2021 sales had not yet been made available at the time of publishing.
Read on to discover the best-selling beer in America.
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Latest annual sales: $842 million
Brewed in the Netherlands, Heineken is one of the most popular imported beers in the United States. With sales exceeding $840 million in 2020, the beer managed to increase its sales nearly six percent from the year prior.
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Latest annual sales: $1.44 billion
Produced in the U.S. by global brewing giant AB InBev, Natural Light’s sales increased by 4.6 percent from the previous year.
The affordable brew is also considered the most popular cheap beer in America, according to Workshopedia, which started with a list of 36 popular beers and tracked Google Trends search interest over the last one-year period for all 50 U.S. states and Washington D.C. to see which beer was searched for the most in each state. Natural Light was the top search in 10 states. The most of any beer on the list.
Latest annual sales: $1.58 billion
Another domestic staple owned by parent company AB InBev, Busch beer did nearly 1.6 billion in U.S. sales, according to the most recently available data. That number represents an 8.4 percent increase from the year prior for the brand that brews Busch, Busch Light, and Busch Ice.
Latest annual sales: $2.16 billion
Miller Lite is owned by Molson Coors and is a competitor of other popular domestic light beers such as Bud Light and Coors Light. The beer’s sales increased by 6.4 percent from the year prior and, according to Zippia, Molson Coors ships roughly 13 million barrels of the brew every year.
Latest annual sales: $2.60 billion
According to Zippia, Coors was created by the Molson Coors Beverage Company in the 1940s and is the best selling of all the brewer’s beer brands, which include Miller Lite, Keystone Lite, Miller High Life, and a host of others.
Latest annual sales: $2.62 billion
Famously enjoyed with a lime stuffed into its longneck bottle, Corona is a Mexican beer that has consistently been one of the most popular beers in the U.S. The refreshing brew is owned by Constellation Brands, a wine, beer, and spirits producer that also owns the No. 3 best-selling beer on this list.
Latest annual sales: $2.66 billion
Another wildly popular Mexican beer among U.S. consumers is Modelo. The brand was originally founded in 1925 and began exporting to the U.S. in 1933, according to Zippia, and is currently owned by Constellation Brands, which increased sales of the beer in the U.S. by 21 percent in 2020.
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Latest annual sales: $2.90 billion
The only beer brand on this list to grow sales more than Modelo during 2020 was Michelob, which is another brand owned by AB InBev. The brew brand saw sales increase 21.7 percent from the year prior to reach nearly $2.9 billion.
Latest annual sales: $7.07 billion
While it only increased sales by 0.3 percent from the year prior, the “King of Beers” was far and away the best-selling beer brand in the U.S. The AB InBev-owned domestic lager not only dominated U.S. sales, but it is also sold in more than 80 countries around the world, according to Zippia, making it arguably one of the most recognizable global brew brands on the market.
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