Skip to main content

Heineken NV has struck back against Anheuser-Busch InBev as the brewing giants’ battle over recyclable beer dispensers escalates.

Heineken, the world’s second-largest beer brewer after AB InBev, retaliated against its competitor and filed a complaint Thursday with the International Trade Commission that seeks to block imports of products that use their patented dispensing line.

In January, AB InBev claimed that Heineken copied its bag-in-bottle beer dispensers, infringed four U.S. patents, and had a policy to “copy and call it innovation.” Heineken has fired back, claiming that Ab InBev actually copied its dispensing line design that has been protected by a patent since 2004, when BeerTender, a dispenser that used a returnable keg with a beer-in-bag container, was first released.

Story continues below advertisement

“Heineken believes ABI’s Nova draught system infringes upon our patents on kegs with a particular dispensing line. As such, we felt the need to defend and protect our intellectual property,” Danya Adelman, Heineken’s communications manager, said in an emailed statement.

The complaint filed in January by AB InBev sought to block imports of Heineken’s Brewlock, Blade and Torp/Sub dispensing systems, which were created to allow smaller bars to imitate the taste of draft beer without having to install taps.

The company has argued that maintaining exclusive rights over its dispensing line doesn’t implicate public safety and welfare concerns.

Heineken, with operations in New York, noted that they were in the process of making “significant domestic investments in plant and equipment.” The complaint urged the protection of their products for the benefit of domestic U.S. industry.

Separately, Heineken announced Friday that it is paying US$3.1-billion for a 40 per cent stake in the parent of China Resources Beer Holdings Co., China’s top brewer, as it continues a bid to challenge AB InBev’s top position in the world’s biggest market.

Report an error
Tickers mentioned in this story
Unchecking box will stop auto data updates
Comments

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • All comments will be reviewed by one or more moderators before being posted to the site. This should only take a few moments.
  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed. Commenters who repeatedly violate community guidelines may be suspended, causing them to temporarily lose their ability to engage with comments.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.
Cannabis pro newsletter