Virus disrupting craft beer sector

The craft brewing sector has not been spared the disruption of coronavirus, with breweries struggling to buy canning equipment from scourge-hit countries and the world’s biggest microbrew trade show cancelled.

Verdant Brewing, based in Cornwall, England, said it was unable to begin using a new canning line it has bought from a Chinese supplier. In a message to customers, the company explained that “the current travel restrictions in place over China” had forced a delay to its canning activities. As a result, new cans of the brewery’s vegan beers would not be available until later this week.

Meanwhile, in the US, the Craft Brewers Conference – which regularly attracts thousands of brewers, pub owners and shop representatives – has been cancelled.

The event, which was to be held next month in San Antonio, Texas, was pulled after the US was placed under a state of emergency as the virus began to spread rapidly. 

“We were trying very hard to balance the public health and public safety priority versus not giving into what felt like some level of media-driven hysteria,” Bob Pease, of organiser the Brewers Association said in the industry magazine Brewbound