Beer Institute Applauds Congressional Letter Calling on DOJ to Examine Aluminum Pricing
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Beer Institute released the following statement on Congressman Ken Buck (R-CO) leading a bipartisan letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions signed by 32 members of Congress asking the Department of Justice to examine aluminum pricing irregularities:
“We appreciate Congressman Ken Buck for leading 31 of his bipartisan colleagues in sending a letter to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions asking the Department of Justice to examine aluminum pricing irregularities so unfair market practices do not disproportionately harm end users, such as the beer industry,” said Jim McGreevy, President and CEO of the Beer Institute.
“The Midwest Premium, created by metal producers years ago, was originally intended to cover the logistical costs of moving metal into North America – essentially a shipping and handling fee. But over time, the Midwest Premium has become a device to speculate and artificially inflate the price paid for aluminum at the expense of end-user businesses and consumers. Since January it has increased by as much as 135 percent – far more than the 10 percent tariff would warrant.
“In order to compete, American brewers need a fair and transparent pricing system for aluminum. Industries thrive when there is predictability and accountability in the metals market. The Department of Justice should investigate the unregulated Midwest Premium to ensure pricing irregularities and other unfair market practices do not disproportionately have a harmful effect on end users of aluminum.”
Last year, the beer industry purchased 36 billion aluminum cans and aluminum bottles, which contain about $2.7 billion worth of aluminum. More than 2.2 million Americans owe their livelihoods to beer in some way – and many of those jobs are in manufacturing. The Beer Institute estimates that the beer industry could lose 20,000 jobs because of the aluminum tariffs and increased cost of aluminum.
The Beer Institute is a national trade association for the American brewing industry, representing brewers of all sizes, as well as beer importers and industry suppliers. First founded in 1862 as the U.S. Brewers Association, the Beer Institute is committed today to the development of sound public policy and to the values of civic duty and personal responsibility. For additional updates from the Beer Institute, visit our website, follow @BeerInstitute on Twitter, like the Beer Institute on Facebook, and follow the Beer Institute on Instagram.