After reports of confusion between coronavirus and Corona beer emerged, the company that owns the Mexican-heritage beer label asserted the virus has not affected the sales. The phrase "38% of Americans" started trending on Twitter on February 28 following a survey that claimed a proportion of beer drinkers would not buy Corona “under any circumstances”.
As the death toll due to the deadly virus increased globally, internet searches for “corona beer virus” and “beer coronavirus” showed a spike. The search behaviour suggested that people were mistakenly linking the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, with the Corona brand.
According to a survey conducted by 5W Public Relations, 38 per cent of American beer drinkers said that they would not buy Corona. Among the beer drinker, 16 per cent were confused whether there is a link between coronavirus and Corona beer.
“While the brand has claimed that consumers understand there's no linkage between the virus and the beer company, this is a disaster for the Corona brand. After all, what brand wants to be linked to a virus which is killing people worldwide?” stated Ronn Torossian, CEO of 5WPR, in a news release.
However, Constellation Brands, owner of Corona, refuted such claims saying the sales of the beer have stayed strong in the United States. Bill Newlands, chief executive of Constellation, said in a statement that the company has seen no impact on their people, facilities or operations and the business continues to perform “very well”.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to those affected by this terrible virus and we hope efforts to more fully contain it gain traction soon,” said Newlands.
Amid the confusion, the novel coronavirus has triggered a fear of pandemic as Middle Eastern and European nations reported death from the virus. According to the latest report, 47 new deaths in China due to coronavirus infections have been confirmed, taking the total death toll because of the deadly virus to over 2,800.