The cider is the first brand extension for Carling outside of the beer category and will be launched in March exclusively to the off-trade.
Molson Coors told the PMA that it will “continually assess potential markets for Carling British Cider, as we do for any product,” but refused to give any further details about an on-trade move.
Carling British Cider has been a year in development and is a 4.5% ABV cider made in Herefordshire. It will be available in 500ml and 275ml bottles.
“Launching under the Carling brand trademark allows us to draw on one of the strongest names in the market to target the eight million drinkers that enjoy both cider and lager,” said brand director Jeremy Gibson.
“Our aim was to make a product that beats the competition on taste and refreshment and Carling British Cider has done just that. The consumer response has been overwhelmingly positive, proof that the time and investment we’ve made to ensure it is a fantastic product has paid off.”
It will be supported with a £4.5m campaign to include TV advertising.
Carling’s move into the cider category, which is worth £869m in the UK off-trade, follows in the footsteps of A-B InBev’s Stella Artois Cidre, launched in 2011 and Carlsberg’s Somersby, launched last year. All were launched into the off-trade first.