After all non-essential services will be shut down within the next 48 hours in New South Wales, Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory to slow the spread of coronavirus, Australia's leading brewing group Carlton and United Breweries (CUB) is pleading with the Victorian government to ensure the breweries are included in the 'essential services' that remain open. The company claims Australians 'need normalcy in their lives' and believe this includes accessing beer and liquor at bottleshops.
“Carlton & United Breweries, Australia’s largest brewer, is greatly concerned about no beer being available in Australia for at least three months if beer is not given exempt status, and what this would mean for tens of thousands of jobs,” a spokesman told The Australian.
Lion Australia, the country’s second largest brewer is also concerned about the current situation and urges for an exemption of the planned regulations for breweries. “Our breweries are 100 per cent able to operate under strict health and safety rules – we have been doing this for the past 10 days to support the Government in the fight against COVID-19,” said Lion Australia Managing Director James Brindley. “You can't turn off and then quickly turn back on major breweries like Tooheys. After re-opening, there could be up to three months of no beer for pubs or bottle shops,” Brindley said.