The Tavern Tatler

News for the liquor trade

Castle Lager embarks on a quest for a label-free South Africa

Castle Lager, South Africa’s “home-grown” and patriotic beer brand, has over the years solidified its position as a unifier and has become synonymous with campaigns that reflect the true essence of South African pride. The iconic beer company SAB, through its flagship brand Castle Lager, is again striking a chord with the launch of a new anti-prejudice movement called #SmashTheLabel.  Every day we see various incidents of labelling and stereotyping amplified in social media, which prompted the brand to take a stand. The movement is aimed at bringing South Africans closer together by driving awareness and creating conversations about the pervasive problem of labelling and stereotyping.

#SmashTheLabel is a direct call to action to South Africans to stand proactively against any form of negative stereotyping and labelling. Castle is encouraging South Africans to share a beer and get to know the person behind the label. Castle Lager urges South Africans to look beyond the label and appreciate individual differences, because it’s in the celebration of our diversity that we break down barriers and create a more united South Africa.

Vaughan Croeser, brand director of Castle Lager, says: “Castle Lager has used its communication as a means to drive South African social unity for many decades – as a home-grown South African brand, we care deeply for the future of our country and its people. The Castle Lager of today reflects a society that is constantly progressing and a society that is brave enough to tackle relevant issues that are of national importance, hence #SmashTheLabel. We represent the very heart and spirit of South Africa, and so we will endeavour to keep this dream of a rainbow nation alive.”

Through the #SmashTheLabel initiative Castle Lager aims to drive participation in conversations and activities in order to attain a “label-free” South Africa. To show solidarity with those who have been labelled, and raise awareness around the issue, Castle Lager will remove its front body label in a series of limited edition label-free packs, which will be available in non-returnable 340ml size bottles.

#SmashTheLabel is a direct call to action to South Africans to stand proactively against any form of negative stereotyping and labelling.

Heineken South Africa says social media posts are false

Heineken South Africa confirms that several viral social media posts that have re-emerged recently regarding so-called "fake" Heineken beer are false.

The original video post depicts two products with Heineken branding and shows these being tampered with at a warehouse. This is an old video, which was first shared in June 2016. We were notified of the video at the time and immediately contacted our colleagues in China to investigate the issue. The individuals in the video are removing Heineken's global track-and-trace code, a sophisticated system implemented to monitor the entire journey of the bottles from production to sales point, across the globe.

Heineken South Africa has not received any information about counterfeit products being sold at any of our official local retailers. Product quality is a top priority at Heineken South Africa and we would like to reassure our consumers that our products are manufactured to the highest safety standards, in compliance with global best practices.

Traders may have noticed some differences on labelling, however, this can be attributed to stock originating from different global regions. Over the years we experienced a high demand for the Heineken 650ml bottle. We did not want to disappoint our customers, so we imported extra Heineken 650ml product from the Netherlands – this is the reason behind the differences between the two back labels.

We would like to emphasise that both of these products are original Heineken 650ml products. In addition, both Heineken 650ml products adhere to the same quality standards and Heineken continues to be a great-tasting beer in 192 countries.

We strongly urge all our consumers to purchase their Heineken South Africa products through legitimate channels. If you have any concerns regarding the legitimacy of any Heineken South Africa products, please email consumercare.heineken-sa@heineken.com or call 0800 026 027.