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Blue-Collar Beverages That Travel Well

How one nation’s mass-market swill can become another’s aspirational nectar
Blue-Collar Beverages That Travel Well
Illustrations by Lydia Nichols

The global liquor industry is one of the few places on earth where it is evidently possible to put lipstick on a pig. Multinational giants like Anheuser-Busch InBev and Diageo have become masters of exporting a beverage from one country to another, having first subjected the product to a repositioning bordering on an extreme makeover. By manipulating the exotic nature of the brand, one nation’s blue-collar beverage can become another’s aspirational nectar.