Budweiser is poised to become the top-selling beer in Canada, elbowing out two long-time national brewing stalwarts, according to press reports.

The Globe and Mail newspaper reports that Budweiser could soon unseat Labatt Blue from the top spot. With Molson recently losing half a percentage point in market share and Labatt fighting off a growing threat from high-priced imports, craft premium brews and price discounting in the mainstream segment, several beer industry observers point to a momentum for the Budweiser brand in Canada, the largest beer market outside the US for Anheuser-Busch.

Labatt Blue, Budweiser and Molson Canadian brands are essentially neck-and-neck in terms of share nationally, Labatt spokesman Nigel Miller told just-drinks.com.

Each has pockets of strength across the country. Depending on the time of year, any one of them could be the lead brand. Ironically, Labatt brews and sells Budweiser in Canada under licence market.