Food News

Report: 7-Eleven's Brewing Up Its Own Brand of Budget Beer Called Game Day

Back in November came news that 7-Eleven was getting into the private-label wine business with Yosemite Road, which sold for $3.99. Dave Faries, alas, was not impressed -- "somewhat palatable" is hardly a viable slogan. So, then, how to greet news of this latest pour: The One Arts Plaza-based chain is getting into the private-label beer biz. So says subscription-only Beer Business Daily filtered through Fortune, neither of which can get the oh-thank-heavens to confirm anything beyond the fact it's working on "a premium beer selling at a budget price."

But this much they do (claim to) know: City Brewing Company in LaCrosse, Wisconsin, will handle the hard part -- making the stuff. City Brewing doesn't have a label of its own -- it brews up beverages for the likes of Sam Adams, Iron City and Mike's Hard Lemonade, among others. Per BBD, we also have a name: Game Day.

It wouldn't be the first time 7-Eleven's tried to get its beer goggles on -- in '03, apparently, there was a partnership with Miller called Santiago. But that was high-end. And it tanked. This'll be low-end stuff -- but, right, don't call it cheap. (7-Eleven prefers to think of its private-label business as "value," as spokesperson Carole Davidson corrected us last year.) So, will it work? Dunno, BBD's Harry Schuhmacher tells Fortune: "Private labels work for soft drinks, but in the beer world brands still matter. Even at the low-end of the spectrum, consumers often show fierce loyalty to a single label."

Update at 2:28 p.m.: Everything you ever needed to know about Game Day, including what it'll look like, is available in our handy-dandy update, complete with Official Press Release and Q&A.

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Robert Wilonsky
Contact: Robert Wilonsky