Infobox Brewery
name = Labatt Brewing Company Ltd.

caption =
location = London, Ontario
owner = InBev
opened = 1847
production =
active_beers = brewbox_beer|name=Blue|style=Pilsner brewbox_beer|name=Kokanee|style=Lager brewbox_beer|name=Lucky|style=Lager brewbox_beer|name=50|style=Ale brewbox_beer|name=Labatt Blue Light|style=Light lager brewbox_beer|name=Alexander Keith's IPA|style=India Pale Ale brewbox_beer|name=Bud Light|style=Light lager brewbox_beer|name=Bud|style=Lager
seasonal_beers =
other_beers =

Labatt Brewing Company Ltd. is a Canadian beer company founded by John Kinder Labatt in 1847 in London, Ontario. In 1995, it was purchased by Belgian brewer Interbrew, now known as InBev. Labatt is the second largest brewer in Canada, after Molson.


Labatt founded the company with the purchase of London's Simcoe Street brewery in partnership with Samuel Eccles. By 1853, Labatt had become the brewery's sole proprietor, and he later renamed it John Labatt's Brewery. With the completion of the Great Western Railway in the 1850s, Labatt's operations expanded to export beer to the rest of the country. By the early 20th century Labatt was a corporation, its shares distributed among John Labatt's seven daughters and two sons.

In 1915, Prohibition began in Canada when public bars were banned in Saskatchewan. A year later prohibition was instituted in Ontario as well, affecting all 64 breweries in the province. Although some provinces totally banned alcohol manufacture, some permitted production for export to the United States. Labatt survived by producing full strength beer for export south of the border and by introducing two "temperance ales" with less than two per cent alcohol for sale in Ontario. However, the Canadian beer industry suffered a second blow when Prohibition began in the U.S. in 1919. When Prohibition was repealed in Ontario in 1926, just 15 breweries remained and only Labatt retained its original management. This resulted in a strengthened industry position. In 1945 Labatt became a publicly traded company with the issuance of 900,000 shares.

John and Hugh Labatt, grandsons of founder John K. Labatt, launched Labatt 50 in 1950 to commemorate 50 years of partnership. The first light ale introduced in Canada, Labatt 50 was Canada’s best-selling beer until 1979.

In 1951, Labatt launched its Pilsener Lager; when it was introduced in Manitoba, the beer was nicknamed "Blue" for the colour of its label and the company's support of Winnipeg's Canadian Football League (CFL) franchise, the Blue Bombers. The nickname stuck and in 1979 Labatt Blue claimed top spot in the Canadian beer market. It lost this status in the late eighties to Molson Canadian, but over the next decade, periodically regained top spot as consumer preferences fluctuated. In 2004, Budweiser took the top spot, pushing Blue to third for the first time in twenty-five years. [] [ [ This Bud's for you, Canada | - Culture - Media ] ] However, Labatt Blue remains the best selling Canadian beer in the world based upon worldwide sales.

Labatt was also the majority owner of the Toronto Blue Jays from their inception in 1976 until September 1, 2000, when Rogers Communications purchased 80% ownership of the team.

Labatt's innovations include the introduction of the first twist-off cap on a refillable bottle in 1984. In 1989, Labatt's had the opportunity to hire Canadian model Pamela Anderson as a Labatt's Blue Zone Girl after she was picked out of the crowd by a TV camera man at a BC Lions football game wearing a Blue Zone crop-top. Photographer and boyfriend, Dann Ilicic, produced the Blue Zone Girl poster on his own after Labatt's refused to have anything to do with it. Later, Labatt's did buy 1000 posters to deal with consumer demand.

In 1995, Labatt was acquired by the large Belgian multinational brewer InBev (then Interbrew), the world market leader.

Labatt is part-owner of Brewers Retail Inc., operator of The Beer Store retail chain, which — protected by legislation — has over 90% market share of Ontario beer sales.

In early 2007, Labatt also acquired Lakeport Brewing Company of Hamilton, Ontario.


* London, Ontario
* Hamilton, Ontario
* St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador
* Montreal, Quebec
* Halifax, Nova Scotia
* Creston, British Columbia
* Edmonton, Alberta"United States"
* Norwalk, Connecticut (Former US headquarters)
* Buffalo, New York (Current and original US Headquarters)

The Labatt US headquarters were originally located in Buffalo, New York before locating to Norwalk, Connecticut. In 2007 Labatt relocated their US headquarters back to Buffalo. Some of the grounds for the move back to Buffalo were based on strong Labatt sales in the city and closer proximity to Toronto and London, Ontario.

Labatt's Toronto brewery ceased operations in 2006 and demolished by 2007, thus ending the brewery's ties to the city.

Corporate activities

Labatt has sponsored the construction of many buildings in London, including Labatt Park, the John Labatt Centre, and the John Labatt Visual Arts Centre at the University of Western Ontario. Bessie Labatt's son Arthur Labatt is the current chancellor of UWO. In 1998 Labatt announced a 20 year sponsorship agreement with the now defunct Montreal Expos (now the Washington Nationals), which included naming rights for a downtown ballpark, which was never built. From 1992-1997 they sponsored the English football team Nottingham Forest. They also are the official beer and corporate sponsor of the OHL hockey franchise Plymouth Whalers. In the 1950s, the company sponsored a PGA Tour golf tournament, the Labatt Open.

Early in 2008, Labatt became the official beer of the Buffalo Bills.


Labatt Blue is sold in all provinces of Canada (most of the United States sells Labatt with sales particularly strong in the Midwest and Northeast along the Canadian border), although in Quebec it is sold under the name Labatt Bleue, with a slightly different logo. Aside from the name, the red maple leaf on the logo has also been changed to a red fleur-de-lis type of image. (See images below.)

See also

* Canadian beer
* List of commercial brands of beer (Canada)


External links

* [ The Official Web site of Labatt Breweries of Canada]
* [ The Official Site of Labatt Blue]
* [ The Official Site of Labatt Bleue]
* [ 1970's Labatt's Beer Commercial] - From the Internet Archive.
* [ 2007 Labatt Blue Commercial (Fish)]
* [ The Official Site of Kokanee]
* [ The Official Site of Alexander Keith's]
* [ The Official Site of Stella Artois]
* [ The Official Site of Brahma]


* [ CBC Archives] CBC Radio reports on Interbrew's takeover of Labatt (From 1995).

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Labatt — Brewing Company Création 2004 Fondateurs John Kinder Labatt Forme juridique Société Anonyme …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Labatt 50 — is a brand of beer launched by John and Hugh Labatt in 1950 to commemorate the 50 years of partnership. It was Canada s best selling beer until 1979. It has experienced a counter culture resurgence in popularity. External links *… …   Wikipedia

  • Labatt 50 — La Labatt 50 est une bière blonde canadienne de type ale contenant une concentration de 5% d alcool par volume. Elle est brassée par la compagnie Labatt. Sommaire 1 Historique 2 Références 3 Annexes …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Labatt Brewing Company — Ltd ist eine kanadische Brauerei. Sie wurde 1847 von dem irischen Einwanderer John Kinder Labatt in London, Ontario gegründet. Die Brauerei wurde im Jahre 1995 vom belgischen Konzern Interbrew, heute als InBev bekannt, übernommen.… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Labatt Park — Infobox Stadium stadium name = Labatt Memorial Park location = London, Ontario, Canada opened = May 3, 1877 renovated = 1883, 1937, 1950s (side grandstands), 1989, 2001 owner = City of London surface = Grass construction cost = 2001 (new Main… …   Wikipedia

  • Labatt Bleue — Un pack de Labatt Bleue Labatt Bleue, ou Labatt Blue en anglais, est une bière canadienne blonde. Bouteille de style « long neck », de couleur brune, avec étiquette et capsule bleues. Labatt Bleue est également le symbole du parti bleu …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Labatt Breweries of Canada Ltd. v. Canada (Attorney General) — SCCInfoBox case name=Labatt Breweries of Canada Limited v. Canada (Attorney General) full case name= heard date=? decided date=? citations= [1980] 1 S.C.R. 914 docket= history= ruling= ratio= SCC= Majority=Estey J. JoinMajority= Concurrence=… …   Wikipedia

  • Labatt Open — The Labatt Open was a golf event on the PGA Tour that was played in Canada in the mid 1950s. It was sponsored by the Labatt Brewing Company. It was played at several different courses.Billy Casper won the first of his 51 PGA Tour wins at this… …   Wikipedia

  • Brasserie Labatt — Labatt La brasserie Labatt a été fondée en 1847 par l homme d affaires canadien d origine irlandaise John Kinder Labatt. Elle est l un des principaux acteurs sur le marché de la bière au Québec. La brasserie Labatt est filiale de Inbev,… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Friends of Labatt Park — is a grassroots, non profit (unincorporated) group of volunteers dedicated to promoting and enhancing Labatt Park in London, Ontario, Canada, as the world s oldest baseball grounds in continuous use in its original location since 1877. In this… …   Wikipedia