Wholesaler limits beer sales as CO2 shortage continues
Wholesaler Booker has limited the amount of beer, cider and soft drinks customers can purchase, as the CO2 shortage continues.
The Tesco-owned company is rationing customers to 10 cases of beer or five cases of cider or soft drinks per purchase.
The company has said: "Due to the international shortage of CO2, we are experiencing some supply issues on soft drinks and beer.
"We are currently working hard with our suppliers to minimise the impact for our customers and cannot comment further at this stage."
Several pub groups have told The Caterer they are carefully monitoring the situation, particularly in light of the World Cup providing a boost for beer sales.
Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UKHospitality, said: "The CO2 shortage is a significant crisis for the hospitality sector, but suppliers are working hard to try to manage the impact and ensure that supply is not severely disrupted.
"This shortage is not helped by the fact that it is happening during the World Cup, when demand is likely to be higher in pubs and bars. If the shortage in CO2 is not dealt with pretty quickly, then some venues could find themselves facing real trouble.
"Venues will need to be diligent and plan ahead as much as they are able to do so, and UKHospitality is liaising with its members to ensure that the correct guidance is in place for businesses.
"There is a limit to what we can do beyond ensuring that businesses are kept up to date as suppliers look to rectify the problem, but we will continue to keep our members informed."
The shortage has also caused concern among livestock processors, who use CO2 to stun animals.
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