Publicis Groupe’s Kekst and Company is defending Pabst's marketing of Blast, a fruity malt liquor promoted by rapper Snoop Dogg that is under attack by state AGs.
Endorsed by rapper Snoop Dogg, the AGs contend that Blast is being marketed to the under 21 crowd via social media and other means.
Sold in a 23.5-ounce can, Blast comes in flavors such as grape, strawberry lemonade and raspberry watermelon.
Since it contains a 12 percent alcohol compared to the six percent alcohol content of beer, opponents have blistered Blast as a "binge-in-a-can."
The AGs from 18 states sent a letter to Pabst last week to express serious concerns about the possible health risk posted by Blast and the "youth friendly" marketing campaign that is spearheaded by Snoop Dogg, who has more than 3M Twitter followers. They want Pabst to lower the alcohol content of Blast that was launched last month.
Kekst distributed a statement, saying "Blast is only meant to be consumed by those about legal drinking age."
The firm said Blast's alcohol content "is clearly marked on its packaging, we are encouraging consumers to consider mixing Blast with other beverages or enjoy it over ice, and we are offering a special seven-ounce bottle for those who prefer a smaller quantity, among other important initiatives."
The attack on Blast follows last year's move on Four Loko, a malt drink that mixed caffeine and alcohol, and was blamed to a string of deaths. The formulated Four Loko does not have the same sales buzz as the original.
Kekst’s statement for Blast mentions that it does not have any caffeine.