Product was created to meet customers’ “various needs,” in this case enjoying the taste of beer while in the middle of your shift.

As someone who occasionally gets paid to drink beer, I understand the appeal of knocking back a cold one during the workday. Most employers, though, don’t take too kindly to their staff getting liquored up on the job.

That’s where Suntory comes into the picture. Among the company’s offerings is All-Free, a zero-alcohol, zero-calorie beer. Sold in cans and glass bottles, and with an appealing golden color for the drink itself, All-Free was designed to replicate the feeling and atmosphere of drinking a regular beer, just without the intoxication. But Suntory realizes that the authentic beer-like visuals can make people feel self-conscious about drinking All-Free in the office, so now it’s released a clear version, called All-Free All-Time, that’s packaged in plastic bottles to make it look more like the innocuous soft drink it actually is.

▼ Looks like water, tastes like beer!

And yes, Suntory is specifically marketing this as something to drink not just in the workplace, but while actually working. All-Free All-Time’s introduction video shows white-collar professionals keeping a bottle within arm’s reach on their work desk…

… and taking a pull during meetings with coworkers.

The video also bills it as a great choice for mid-workday lunches or as a thirst-quencher after sports or exercise.

In some ways, All-Free All-Time seems like a natural and logical attempt to extend the success Japanese beverage makers have had with flavored but clear drinks over the past few years, since their lack of coloring gives them a more “mature” and office-appropriate image than an obvious bottle of soda or juice. However, if Suntory really wants to shield customers from judgmental attention from coworkers and clients, it might want to reconsider its decision to decorate All-Free All-Time’s label with a very beer-like sprig of barley, and also the word “BEER” in noticeable, capital letters.

It’s also worth noting that in its description of the regular All-Free, Suntory boasts that it went to great lengths to give its non-alcoholic beverage the aroma of actual beer. While the company hasn’t specified whether that’s the case for All-Free All-Time, if the clear near-beer isn’t odorless, it’s probably not going to fly at most offices, since in professional situations, even if you’re now actually drunk, it’s generally frowned upon to smell like you are .

We’ll have to wait until June 19, when All-Free All-Time goes on sale at Japanese convenience stores, to taste, and smell, it for ourselves.

Source: Suntory via IT Media
Top image: YouTube/サントリー公式チャンネル (SUNTORY)
Insert images: Suntory, YouTube/サントリー公式チャンネル (SUNTORY)