Earlier this year, Anheuser-Busch announced plans to put Budweiser beer in space. During the announcement at the film and music festival SXSW, the company went into detail about some of the obstacles associated with putting beer in space, like brewing difficulties caused by lack of water, a decrease in taste due to tongue swelling that happens in space, and even the prevalence of those nasty "wet burps."
Despite these obstacles, Anheuser-Busch's plans will advance next week when Budweiser barley seeds and other beer ingredients ride into space aboard a SpaceX rocket on its way to the International Space Station. Upon arrival, the Budweiser deliverables will be used in experiments conducted aboard the station that will hopefully further the company's plans to eventually create beer on Mars.
A beer brand may not be the first brand you think of when you think "space," but there have plenty of space-related branding efforts over the decades. The first brand that may come to mind is the powdered orange-flavored beverage mix Tang. Although not invented specifically for use in space, it reached new heights of popularity when NASA used it on US astronaut John Glenn's 1962 Mercury flight and then on Gemini missions. Also back in 1962, Swiss watchmaker Omega's Speedmaster watch made it into space when it was worn by American astronaut Walter Schirra while he orbited the earth. Speedmasters were also on the wrists of astronauts Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong when they made the first Moon landing in 1969.
In 1975, American cigarette manufacturer Philip Morris and the Soviet Yava cigarette factory entered into a joint venture to produce commemorative Apollo Soyuz packs of cigarettes. And fast-forwarding to 1985, Coca-Cola's announcement of the design of a "space can" for astronauts to drink its soda was met by competitor Pepsi's own "space can" design. Both beverages' "delivery systems" ended up being tested on the Challenger space shuttle.
According to Wikipedia, Pizza Hut was the first company to deliver pizza to outer space aboard the International Space Station in 2001. And KitKat has sent a chocolate bar into space and tweaked its "Have a break" tagline to become "Break from gravity" in support of skydiver Felix Baumgartner's jump to Earth from a helium balloon 24 miles up, which was sponsored by Red Bull.
Which brand do you think we'll see in space next?