Coors Brewers has set aside £2m to ensure 50% of all Carling and Grolsch is served in branded glasses by 2004. The brewer will introduce the glassware at no extra cost to pubs. Coors' on-trade category marketing controller Neale Lewis explained: "There are compelling reasons for us as an industry to get behind branded glassware. "Branded glasses increase consumer perception of brand image and increase the consumer's impression of the quality of the venue. The objective is to create consumer pull through, where they demand their drink in a branded nucleated glass." Coors will also be offering pint and half-pint Grolsch STG (safer than glass) plastic beer glasses. STGs, which have a similar look and feel to real glass, are toughened, re-usable, unbreakable and rigid so they don't deform and spill their contents when people take hold of them. The new glasses are being trialled in around 30 outlets throughout April with the intention of making them more widely available from May. Grolsch brand manager Ian Ward said: "The new glass will be a first for the industry, reflecting a growing trend for plastic containers, particularly in outdoor venues where safety has become a major issue. We will be gearing it towards our Grolsch beer garden venues and where magistrates have placed constraints on licensees not to use glass. We hope STGs will help our customers by making life safer for their staff and their customers." Another plank of the £11.9m investment programme behind the premium lager brand is to roll out 350 Grolsch beer gardens. The focus will be on key cities London, Manchester, Birmingham, Leeds and Newcastle, as well as coastal regions south of the M4 motorway.