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Aluminum can shortage, price hike could drive up cost of craft brews

black husky pic.jpg
Posted at 9:21 PM, Dec 01, 2021

MILWAUKEE — Local Craft Breweries say consumers should prepare for a price hike in 2022.

The brewers themselves have been dealing with the higher price of ingredients for some time now, but the cost of aluminum cans could be what forces them to raise prices.

“We’ve seen a substantial increase in our pricing on cans,” Andy Gehl, co-founder of Third Space Brewing, said.

Third Space Brewing
Andy Gehl, co-founder of Third Space Brewing

The increase comes after aluminum can manufacturers have raised prices and placed minimums on the amount of cans customers buy. According to CNN, aluminum can manufacturer Ball says they will require customers to buy a minimum of five truckloads of cans at once.

Gehl says it would take his brewery a year to sell a million cans of their most popular beer.

“We sell a lot of happy place so we can absorb the minimum, if needing to buy a million cans in one shipment.”

But it’s the other brands that sell in smaller quantities that could be in jeopardy of being discontinued or canned a different way.

Aluminum can shortage
The increase comes after aluminum can manufacturers have raised prices and placed minimums on the amount of cans customers buy.

“When you have 7,8,10 different brands on the shelf at a given time, you can’t store 10 million cans” says Gehl.

He believes the industry will likely pass the price increases on to the consumer in 2022 with some brewers charging more than others.

“I think industry wide there is going to be an increase on prices” said Gehl.

He believes customers can expect to pay abut 50 cents more for a six-pack in the new year.

“Bottom line is everybody is paying more and I’d would say 30%, 1/3 is probably typical for cans” said Black Husky Brewing owner and brewer Tim Eichinger.

His brewery has seen an increase as well. Black Husky is working to drive more people to their tap room instead of canned beer distribution sales.

Black Husky Brewery
Black Husky Brewing owner and brewer Tim Eichinger

Many aluminum can manufacturers say it’s simply a case of supply and demand. With energy drinks, seltzers, and beers, the demand for cans is high.

Many are adding production across the US, but that is likely to take time, leading to at least a short term hike in prices

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