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Beer Institute Highlights Transparency Issues in Aluminum Market on Beer Can Appreciation Day


WASHINGTON — To commemorate Beer Can Appreciation Day, this morning, the Beer Institute released an animated video, “Cracking the Case of Price Spikes,” highlighting transparency issues in the aluminum market.

“America’s brewers purchase more than 36 billion aluminum cans every year, and aluminum is the most significant input cost for our nation’s beer industry,” said Jim McGreevy, President and CEO of Beer Institute. “Due to a combination of tariffs and an obscure aluminum pricing system known as the Midwest Premium, brewers who support more than 2.1 million well-paying jobs across the United States have seen their aluminum costs skyrocket. On Beer Can Appreciation Day, Beer Institute urges beer enthusiasts across the nation to call their elected leaders and urge them to vote for increased transparency in aluminum benchmarking and pricing that follows American market principles.”

Most aluminum beer producers use in the United States is either recycled aluminum or imported from Canada – neither of which should be subject to 10% aluminum tariffs implemented by the Administration in March 2018.  However, the Midwest Premium more than doubled after implementation of tariffs and brewers are still being charged a full “tariff-paid” premium on all aluminum. Between March 2018 and July 2019, the American beverage industry paid an additional $458 million on aluminum it purchased. However, the U.S. treasury only collected $73 million, or 16% of that amount.

Beer Can Appreciation Day marks the day in 1935 when the G. Krueger Brewing Company first sold beer in cans to the public. On January 22, 1959, the seamless all-aluminum can designed by William Coors made its debut with a 7-ounce can of Coors Banquet. This new recyclable can design revolutionized the beverage container industry, and it is now the standard for cans for both alcohol and non-alcohol beverages. Today, more than 57 percent of beer sold in the United States is in an aluminum container, and aluminum is the largest commodity costs for brewers.

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