Fourth-Place Medal

Heineken, official Olympic beer, condemned by British politician/pub advocate

Fourth-Place Medal

Getty Images

London conjures images of crowded pubs, which conjure images of pints of beer, which conjure the taste of … Heineken?

Well, not really. Which is why having the Dutch brewery's lager as the official beer for the London Olympic Games has drawn the ire of Greg Mulholland, a Liberal Democrat MP and chair of the "All Party Parliamentary Save the Pub Group," whose meetings we simply must attend one day.

[ Related: Londoners upset with far-reaching security measures ]

Mulholland recently blasted the IOC for its selection of Heineken, claiming it was an affront to the celebration of British culture that are the London Games, saying:

"Beer is the UK's national drink and the country has a strong and ancient tradition of brewing; by choosing a mass produced bland foreign lager, the committee has ignored all the wonderful, traditional beers that the UK has to offer and instead gone for the company with the biggest cheque book.

"The Olympic Games is a prime opportunity for Britain to showcase the best of British, including the opportunity to promote its traditional beers and its thriving brewing industry. By opting for Heineken as the official beer, the opportunity has been lost. The decision is completely at odds with the strong positive British identity of the bid and the forthcoming London 2012 Olympics."

Mulholland tabled a Commons motion (essentially a topic for debate) this week that labeled the IOC's choice of Heineken as a "wholly inappropriate decision" with "the UK being one of the world's leading brewing nations."

(The Netherlands, for the record, exports a greater percentage of the beer it produces than any country in the world — 50 percent.)

Facing this type of political pushback, Heineken released this statement via The Drink Business:

"As the UK's leading beer and cider business, Heineken is proud to have been chosen as an official supplier and partner to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, building on an association that goes back 20 years.

"We are unequivocally committed to the responsible marketing of our beers and ciders and our long track record of sponsoring international sporting events like the Heineken Cup, Uefa Champions League and the Rugby World Cup bears testimony to this."

It released a short statement to the Guardian as well:

"In addition to Heineken lager, we will supply London 2012 venues with the nation's favourite ale, British-brewed John Smith's, and the nation's favourite cider, British-made Strongbow."

So Heineken is a Dutch import, but the other two brands offered at Olympic sites are made in the U.K.

But they still aren't the type of brews that symbolize London's love of beer, at least in the eyes of advocates like Greg Mulholland. The IOC should have chosen something like Carling … which is owned by Molson Coors, of course. (Awkward.)

We'll just go ahead and assume that this protest against Heineken has something to do with beer costing 7.23 pounds (or just over $11) at Olympic venues. Because on top of paying that for beer, Londoners are paying that for Dutch beer.

Check out Elite Athlete Workouts from Yahoo! Sports:


More Olympic coverage on the Yahoo! network:

Kobe says current Team USA could take the Dream Team
Marion Jones' rise and fall played out on the public stage
Gymnast may not have made Olympics if not for mother's decision

Sign up for Yahoo Fantasy Hockey
Sorry you didn't like this comment. Please provide a reason below.

Are you sure?
Rating failed. Try again.
Request failed. Try again.
We will promote constructive and witty comments to the top, so everyone sees them!
Sorry, we can’t load comments right now. Try again.
    • Dortmund's Goetze out of Champions League clash with Real Madrid

      Dortmund's Goetze out of Champions League clash with Real Madrid

      Attacking midfielder Mario Goetze has been ruled out of Borussia Dortmund's Champions League clash with Real Madrid due to a knee injury, the German club said on Tuesday. Dortmund said the injury to the 24-year-old was minor, adding that he had a … More »

      Reuters - 9 minutes ago
    • Field days, uh, nights, for Colts in 41-10 romp over Jets

      Field days, uh, nights, for Colts in 41-10 romp over Jets

      With their star quarterback behind center again, Dwayne Allen and T.Y. Hilton had field days against the New York Jets. Make that a field night at the Meadowlands as they helped the Indianapolis Colts (6-6) move into a tie atop the AFC South with a … More »

      AP - Sports - 10 minutes ago
    • Denmark's Bjorn named Europe's Ryder Cup captain

      Denmark's Bjorn named Europe's Ryder Cup captain

      Denmark's Thomas Bjorn was named as Europe's Ryder Cup captain on Tuesday with the task of reclaiming the trophy from the United States at Le Golf National in Paris in 2018. The three past captains were the key decision makers in selecting Thomas," … More »

      Reuters - 16 minutes ago
    • Golf-Denmark's Bjorn named Europe's Ryder Cup captain

      (Adds detail, quotes) LONDON, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Denmark's Thomas Bjorn was named as Europe's Ryder Cup captain on Tuesday with the task of reclaiming the trophy from the United States at Le Golf National in Paris in 2018. The three past captains … More »

      Reuters - 18 minutes ago
    • Liverpool go bonding in Barcelona

      Liverpool go bonding in Barcelona

      (Reuters) - Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp has flown his squad to Barcelona on a two-day bonding trip ahead of the visit of West Ham United in the Premier League on Sunday, the Liverpool Echo reported. Liverpool suffered a shock defeat at … More »

      Reuters - 19 minutes ago