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Budweiser’s owner stopped making beer to provide water for Hurricane Harvey’s victims

Helping after Hurricane Harvey.
AP Photo/Gregory Bull
Helping after Hurricane Harvey.
  • Chase Purdy
By Chase Purdy

Food Reporter

Published This article is more than 2 years old.

In the wake of Hurricane Harvey’s devastation of Texas and Louisiana, Anheuser-Busch switched gears at one of its US packaging facilities to can water instead of beer.

The St. Louis-based company, which makes beer brands like Budweiser, Shock Top, and Michelob, has sent out more than 155,000 cans of water to flood-stricken areas. It’s a small way to help a region that expects close to half-a-million people to seek disaster assistance because flooding drove them out of their homes and neighborhoods.

Because major storms often pass through the region during hurricane season, Anheuser-Busch’s beer production plants in Cartersville, Georgia pause the canning process a couple times a year to send water to areas in need of clean drinking water. It has sent 50,000 cans of water to Flint, Michigan during its ongoing water-infrastructure crisis, and also sent cans to the northeast of the continental US after Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

“Putting our production and logistics strengths to work by providing safe, clean drinking water is the best way we can help in these situations,” the company said in a statement. Since 1988, the brewer has canned and sent more than 76 million cans of drinking water to help disaster-stricken areas.

Other companies have pitched in, too, to help the rescue efforts in response to Hurricane Harvey. Amazon announced it would match donations of up to $1 million made through its site. United Airlines is matching donations of up to $200,000. Coffee giant Starbucks and rental-car firm Enterprise are also chipping in to help.

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