A leading brewery's attempt to piggyback on Russian national pride backfired when local prosecutors investigated the company for illegally distributing the personal information of the World War II heroes whose tales of heroism adorned the company's limited edition cans.
The Russian division of AB InBev, the world's largest brewery and producer of such popular beers as Budweiser, Stella Artois and Corona, has closed down production of the limited edition line of their popular Russian product Sibirskaya Korona, AB InBev said in a statement on their website.
Featuring St. George's ribbons, illustrations of soldiers and four stories of Soviet wartime bravery, the line was meant to go on sale at the beginning of May, just in time for Victory Day celebrations on May 9 and the accompanying national holidays.
However, despite changing proper names in the wartime tales, Omsk region prosecutors together with the local department of Rospotrebnadzor, the consumer rights watchdog, launched an investigation of the company for violating a law banning the distribution of personal information.
In their statement the brewery said that "it greatly respected the memory of the heroes of the Great Patriotic War," as World War II is known in Russia. It added that it had hoped its limited line would help remind modern Russians of the dramatic events in its history.