Will you even run out of beer? In a pandemic, manufacturers are running out of bottles

Will you even run out of beer? In a pandemic, manufacturers are running out of bottles
Will you even run out of beer? In a pandemic, manufacturers are running out of bottles
Photo: Eeshan Garg / Unplash

At home because of the pandemic, the Brazilian population is drinking to pass the time. The problem is that, with the difficulties imposed by the crisis, the beverage manufacturers are having problems to be able to buy bottles since the end of last year.

This is shown by a report by Credit Suisse, of 29 March, signed by Marcella Recchia and Henrique Rocha. The duo spoke with a major glass bottle supplier to the Brazilian beer industry and concluded that glass bottle packaging restrictions are likely to persist until 2023.

“Even with the supposed deceleration in consumption in February, driven by lower government subsidies and the higher price of beer, the industry was unable to build inventories, which led to a continuation of capacity restrictions,” says the text.

National production even grew from 6% to 7% at the end of 2020, but the increase was insufficient. For 2023, a further increase is expected, from 8% to 10%, in production, which should normalize the market. In the meantime, some brands have imported the product or adapted the production.

Heineken and Petrópolis, according to the study, were the most impacted. The Dutch giant partially managed the problem by importing 25% to 30% of its glass bottle needs last year at prices 40% above domestic prices.

The Brazilian brand, in turn, was the most impacted, which led the company to divert production to aluminum cans.

AmBev, a leader in the segment, has hardly been impacted by the scarcity of glass bottles on the market, benefiting from its own production (about 44% of the containers were produced by the company itself) and “solid contracts with major suppliers” .

With this prioritization on the part of suppliers, the bank believes that “AmBev is better positioned in the sector to deal with the restricted packaging supply environment. Thus, the company must continue to benefit from vertical integration with its own can can factories. aluminum and glass bottles. ”

In a note, the National Union of the Beer Industry (Sindicerv) clarifies that the lack of bottles that the market has been facing is a reflection of the impact that the pandemic had on the supply chain and packaging production – and that has been affecting several segments.

“Specifically in the beer sector, we are facing specific challenges with some inputs inherent to the business, but looking to suppliers for solutions for normalization and the least possible impact on the process”, says the text.

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