Qatar has implemented a ban on the sale of beer at all FIFA World Cup stadium perimeters.
The announcement comes 72 hours before the world’s largest single-sporting event kicks off.
— FIFA Media (@fifamedia) November 18, 2022
“Following discussions between host country authorities and FIFA, a decision has been made to focus on the sale of alcoholic beverages on the FIFA Fan Festival, other fan destinations and licensed venues, removing sales points of beer from Qatar’s FIFA World Cup 2022 stadium perimeters, FIFA Media said in a statement issued on behalf of FIFA and Qatar, on Twitter.
FIFA added that there would no impact to the sale of Bud Zero, which will remain available at all Qatar’s World Cup stadiums.
“Host country authorities and FIFA will continue to ensure that the stadiums and surrounding areas provide an enjoyable, respectful and pleasant experience for all fans,” FIFA added.
The tournament organisers appreciate AB InBev’s understanding and continuous support to our joint commitment to cater for everyone during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.”
The news comes days after the Budweiser owner AB InBev was reportedly asked to relocate their stalls at the stadiums to make its products look less prominent. “AB InBev was informed on November 12 and are working with FIFA to relocate the concession outlets to locations as directed. We are working with FIFA to bring the best possible experience to the fans,” AB InBev told Sky News.
The FIFA World Cup commences on Sunday, November 20, with hosts taking on Ecuador. It is the first time that the tournament is being held in the Middle East.
In a statement on October 27, AB InBev said that the company and Budweiser teams had been working closely with FIFA to ensure that local customs were respected while fans of legal drinking age enjoy their beers.
29 days. 32 teams. One extraordinary moment to celebrate football, fans and players. See what @Budweiser and more than a dozen AB InBev brands have planned for the 2022 FIFA World Cup™ at https://t.co/u7bEHfCC33 pic.twitter.com/9LP3iar2wT
— AB InBev (@abinbev) October 28, 2022
“As the world’s leading brewer, we want every experience with beer to be a positive one. A big part of that is our industry-leading efforts to provide consumers with more choices for moderation and promoting responsible consumption – what we call Smart Drinking,” the statement added.
“Our largest Smart Drinking initiative is ‘social norms’ marketing, where we tap into the emotional connections people have with our brands to help influence positive behaviours and reduce harmful drinking.
“For the FIFA World Cup, we are launching ‘Drink Wiser, Cheer Better’, a marketing campaign that encourages fans to alternate regular beers with no-alcohol ones or water, eat before and while drinking, and plan for a safe ride home. No-alcohol Budweiser Zero will be on offer inside and outside all stadiums and related events,” AB InBev added.