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These Are the Most Popular Beers in the United States

most popular beer
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Overall beer consumption in the United States may have dropped again in 2017, but Americans still threw back 208 million barrels of beer. That's a buttload of beer. But the kinds of drinks Americans swig are changing all the time. 24/7 Wall St. went through the last year of changes in domestic shipping volume for "26 of the beer industry’s largest brands" using data from Beer Marketer's Insights to show some of the changes inside the beer world.

Some of the reasons cited for changes across the industry are millennials moving to wines and mixed drinks, changing demographics in the US, and craft beer continuing to take a larger market share from big beer. (Interestingly, overall beer sales were down, but the Brewer's Association says sales of craft beer rose again in 2017.)

One of the big changes seen below is the growth of Mexican beers like Modelo and Corona. Those two are three of the largest growers year-over-year. They're just behind Michelob Ultra which grew 21.3%. That's the most among the beers listed below, most of which saw a year-over-year decrease.

Below, you'll find the top 26 beers according to the data provided to 24/7 Wall St. Also included for the top 10 is beer's volume change from 2016 and its parent company. The latter of the two drives to the heart of "the illusion of choice" often talked about by craft beer lovers. It can look like there are 10 beers on the shelf at your local liquor store, but it's possible they all come from just one or two parent companies. 

It's important to note this is not a quality judgment on these beers. If you're looking for something like that, you might want to check out Zymurgy’s Best Beers in America list, which was topped by Bell's Two Hearted and Russian River Pliny the Elder this year.

10. Busch
Parent company: Anheuser-Busch InBev
Change from previous year: -2.6%

9. Busch Light
Parent company: Anheuser-Busch InBev
​​​​​​​Change from previous year:​​​​​​​ 0.4%

8. Natural Light
Parent company: Anheuser-Busch InBev
​​​​​​​Change from previous year:​​​​​​​ -1.9%

7. Modelo Especial
Parent company: Constellation Brands
​​​​​​​Change from previous year:​​​​​​​ 17.4%

6. Michelob Ultra
Parent company: Anheuser-Busch InBev
​​​​​​​Change from previous year:​​​​​​​ 21.3%

5. Corona Extra
Parent company: Constellation Brands
​​​​​​​Change from previous year:​​​​​​​ 3.6%

4. Miller Lite
Parent company: Molson Coors Brewing
​​​​​​​Change from previous year:​​​​​​​ -2.8%

3. Budweiser
Parent company: Anheuser-Busch InBev
​​​​​​​Change from previous year:​​​​​​​ -7.5%

2. Coors Light
Parent company: Molson Coors Brewing
Change from previous year: -4.1%

1. Bud Light
Parent company: Anheuser-Busch InBev
Change from previous year: -6.2%

Other beers round out the top 26 include, starting from number 11, include Heineken, Keystone Light, Miller High Life, Stella Artois, Bud Ice, Pabst Blue Ribbon, Natural Ice, Yuengling Lager, Blue Moon, Dos Equis, Coors Banquet, Steel Reserve, Icehouse, Corona Light, Milwaukee's Best Ice, and Guinness.

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Dustin Nelson is a News Writer with Thrillist. He holds a Guinness World Record but has never met the fingernail lady. Follow him @dlukenelson.