2004 Draft One -- a success

Draft One ushers in a new genre

In February 2004, Draft One went on sale nationwide and became a smash hit, selling 18.15M cases. The genesis of this product was sluggish demand for beer, with low-malt beer-like beverages claiming nearly 40% of the market. The bitterness and unique aroma of beer were unfamiliar to young people, and they preferred something cleaner, crisper, and more affordable.

Discovering green pea protein

Draft One
Draft One

In December of 1999, our brewing engineers began developing a new genre of alcohol. This was a voluntary project led by staff. They reasoned that if the source of bitterness in beer is the barley and malt, then this could be ameliorated by using an alternative ingredient. Initially, they struggled to find one. They did not bother experimenting with green peas due to the fact that they were costly at the time. But in December 2002, one of the team members read in a magazine about green pea protein. The team trialed this and found that it cleared up the bitterness for a clean, brisk taste. This represented a solution to the most challenging hurdle for Draft One’s development.