Belgium Beer Emergency Alert

January 21, 2010

Belgium running out of its best beer after brewery blockade

by Scott Carmichael (RSS feed)

on Jan 19th 2010 at 5:30PM

Belgium is running out of beer!

The world capital of good beer is in the middle of a “beer war”. When mega-brewer (and new owner of Anheuser-Busch) InBev decided to fire 260 of its Belgian employees, the entire staff decided to shut down the breweries, and prevent any beer from being produced.

The blockade is a serious matter – large Belgian grocery store chains are now without any beer, and Belgian bars have run out of tap beer. Brands like Leffe, Jupiler, Stella Artois and Hoegaarden have been unable to deliver any new beer for several days, which even impacts Belgium’s neighbors in The Netherlands.

Belgians consumer just under 95 liters of beer a year (compared to 81 liters in the United States), they are also one the largest producers of beer – InBev brews 21% of all the beer in the world, though the Belgian brands only make up a small percentage of that.

There are no plans as of yet to break up the blockade, though if the strike really does last too long, I’m guessing thirsty Belgians may take matters into their own hands.

1/21/2010 Update: Your favorite feline foodie spoke with Beer Enthusiast, Mike Wright and although the blockade at this time is confined to breweries producing Belgium ales, he did express grave concern because the parent company owns Anheuser Busch… which makes his much beloved Bud Light.

1/22/2010 – NEWS UPDATE: According to the St. Louis Business Journal, Anheuser Busch InBev expects the blockade to end today after agreeing to freeze the jobs that it planned to cut…more details by clicking here.

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