Alan Bjerga is very, very happy that K-pop superstars BTS are spreading the love this summer with their unstoppable Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 hit “Butter.” How do we know this? Well, it’s right there on his business card: Chief of Communications for the American Butter Institute. With the South Korean boy band’s smooth dance track spending a sixth week a the top of the charts, the septet is practically doing Bjerga’s job for him.
He tells Billboard that he became aware of the song “probably within a week” or two of its release in late May when he started seeing social media blowing up as BTS spotlighted his org’s signature product with a series of pre-release teaser audio clips and an hourlong video of an animated pat of butter melting against a yellow background.
“My main reaction was, ‘Great!’ It obviously doesn’t hurt to have your product associated with the top band’s song of the summer,” Bjerga says of the tune that could end up being the hot weather hit of 2021.
He’s joking, but only kind of. Because when you represent the people who make butter and butter products, this kind of serendipity is a definite win. “It’s funny that the timing is now,” he says, noting that butter has been growing in popularity for the past decade, and that according to the most recent national stats per capita, butter consumption is at its highest point since the 1960s.
“Like BTS says, ‘it’s smooth,'” says Bjerga, quoting a bit of the tune’s chorus while mentioning that he’s more of a grunge rock guy himself. Remembering the rise of the Backstreet Boys, *NSYNC and other boy bands in the late 1990s, Bjerga says BTS exemplifies the best of that tradition, except translated into a global context that is “incredibly exciting.” And, given the unexpected dual upward trajectory of the song and his group’s signature product, you can expect hearts to keep melting around the planet.
“The future of U.S. butter sales is in exports, and to have arguably the biggest band on the globe giving a thumbs-up in song can’t be anything but good,” he predicts.
Watch the “Butter” video below.