Here's Budweiser's Plan to Bring Beer to Mars

Monday, 27 November 2017 - 10:40AM
Monday, 27 November 2017 - 10:40AM
Here's Budweiser's Plan to Bring Beer to Mars
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Image credit: NASA
Mars might not be the most hospitable environment, but that may soon change thanks to Budweiser. Anheuser-Busch is planning to bring beer to the Red Planet. 

The Martian
is often held up as an example of a wonderfully accurate portrayal of life on Mars, showing the growing of crops in enclosed spaces in order to feed astronauts who travel to the Red Planet.

As it turns out, though, it seems that there's one major flaw in this movie's realism: Matt Damon is not nearly drunk enough. When astronauts finally do arrive on Mars, and eventually establish the kind of permanent human colony that Elon Musk is so eager to build, there'll likely be a large Budweiser presence on the planet.

Anheuser-Busch, the parent group that owns Budweiser, has reiterated its promises from earlier this year at SXSW event that the company is seriously working on plans to make their popular brand of beer the first to gain a foothold among the stars.

In the long-term, this involves establishing a permanent method of growing and brewing beer on Mars, but as this is a fairly distant dream, the company is first going to conduct a boozy experiment on the International Space Station. Forget Bud Light—this is Bud Weightless.

Speaking on behalf of Anheuser-Busch, Budweiser's vice president Ricardo Marques explained the company's plans for bringing beer to Mars:

Opening quote
"Budweiser is always pushing the boundaries of innovation and we are inspired by the collective American Dream to get to Mars. We are excited to begin our research to brew beer for the red planet."
Closing quote

The initial first step, apparently, is to send 20 barley seeds up to the ISS as part of a larger research mission. The seeds will spend 30 days in orbit around the planet before returning to Earth so that Budweiser's scientists (apparently, they exist) can analyze them to see what effect zero gravity might have had on them.

Presumably, the most important thing that the scientists will be checking for is whether barley seeds that have been exposed to a weightless environment still taste good when fermented.

For some reason, alcohol always seems to go hand in hand with pondering the wonders of the universe. There's already a beer that's inspired by Ohio's astronauts, as well as a specialty brewery that adds moon dust to its ales.

This may sound suspiciously like a sneaky marketing move, but this research may well become more important as plans for far-flung colonies and commercial spaceflight develop over the coming years and decades. Eventually, Earthlings are going to blast off into space to set up colonies further afield, and once that happens, there'll be a strong market for all kinds of luxury Earth food and drink.

Aside from anything else, once SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, and other space tourism bodies begin offering luxury off-world cruises to a larger variety of customers, the ability to serve alcoholic drinks will no doubt help them attract more business.

It'll be a while before we actually see beer that's grown on Mars, but it's not out of the question now to imagine that Budweiser might actually develop a Martian beer.

Whether the drink will be in high demand remains to be seen—as the United Arab Emirates seems to be the country that's making the most genuine progress in the direction of setting up a Mars base, the largely Muslim population of this future colony might not even want alcohol once they're living on the Red Planet.
Budweiser's Plan to Bring Beer to Mars