Miller has high hopes for lower-calorie beer

Back in March, I wrote about Miller Brewing Co.'s test marketing of a new beer called MGD 64 ("MGD 64 is not a spray lubricant'). That testing has worked so well that the Milwaukee company says it is planning a national rollout of the 64-calorie version of its Miller Genuine Draft Light brand.

MGD 64 was initially launched last summer in Madison, WI, and now is available throughout the Midwest and West.

Miller CEO Tom Long said in a message to distributors that MGD 64 will replace the 110-calorie MGD Light brand around the country by mid-September.

Long said conversion from trial to repeat purchase has been nearly twice that of Michelob Ultra after its first two months in the market. He said MGD 64 has led a "dramatic turnaround" in sales. Midwest sales, for example, are on the rise after a double-digit decline a year ago, he said.

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