Danes offered free Carlsberg beer in Grey ‘Adopt a Keg’ campaign


Carlsberg is supporting bars in its homeland of Denmark by asking people to adopt a keg.

Drinkers can fill up virtually from home now and exchange for real beer in a real bar; as soon as they are able to reopen.

Carlsberg campaign

To take part, all beer-drinkers need to do is enjoy a bottle or can of Carlsberg at home during the lockdown and scan the label to add it to their virtual keg on Carlsberg’s website.

People can fill their virtual keg with four scanned beers, adding up to one beer a day. This will earn them two post-lockdown pints, on Carlsberg; to share with a friend when visiting their favourite bar, pub or restaurant.

“The hospitality industry has been hit particularly hard”, Julian Marsili, Carlsberg’s Global Brand Director, said.

“The bars we love are empty, for good reason, and right now there’s nothing people can do but wait.

“With ‘Adopt a Keg’, we’ve enabled people to support their favourite bars, simply by enjoying a beer at home.

“By adopting a keg, people can drink like there is a tomorrow; giving us all something to look forward to and helping to kick-start the hospitality industry once it opens up again.

“Best of all, that first future beer with a friend at your favourite bar? It’s on Carlsberg.”


Carlsberg is backing #adoptakeg with a typically no-nonsense, yet humourous campaign; maintaining its famous Danish witty tone while tackling a serious subject.

TV ad, created by Grey Europe, finishes with a spin on Carlsberg’s long running: “Probably the best beer in the world” strapline, saying: “Can we drink today like there is a tomorrow? Probably.”

“We wanted to help bars, which are critical partners for Carlsberg, but we wanted to do it in a way that was both on brand and different than all the other stuff out there that banks in the same type of tonality and footage,” said Javier Campopiano, Grey Europe CCO.

“This is a really Carlsberg way to help.”

In 48 hours, and in Denmark only, 2,158 virtual kegs were created, 1297 bar-codes validated, and the campaign received the support of the Danish Bartender AssociationHere is how it works.

“Your own personal keg is a new model, it both gives you something to look forward to, and helps your favourite bar come back stronger,” added Graham Drew, global ECD for Carlsberg at Grey.

“The moment the doors open again will be a critical event, retrieving your keg will be a part of that celebration.”

Multimedia reach

The TVC is also supported by a social media campaign created by AKQA on Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.

Steffen Blauenfeldt Otkjaer, Managing Director of AKQA Denmark, added: “This is a beautiful initiative from Carlsberg and Grey Europe to offer hope and support in a time of immense uncertainty and crisis.

“And with an incredibly simple mechanic to boot. We’re very proud to be able to play a role in getting the message across.”

Denmark has started to lift its lockdown measures by reopening schools and some small businesses; but physical distancing measures are still in place, meaning that bars are still closed.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, Carlsberg has taken steps to support the industry and wider community; this includes giving donations to affected societies around the world and the production of hand-sanitiser using alcohol from its breweries.

Meanwhile, the Carlsberg Foundation, the company’s majority shareholder, is donating 95m DKK (13.8m USD) to mobilise and support researchers, art museums and civil society through the pandemic.