You know?There was some tension at the Eutropius brewery in Menen this week when it was carbon dioxide supplier No delivery reported anymore. For a moment, director Wouter Vermeersch feared that he would have to stop production of 420 beers, but found an alternative supplier in time. “However, I think the sector’s problems are far from over.”
The Eutropius brewery can be found in Menen in West Flanders and produces 420 beers for various customers. In addition, Wouter Vermeersch markets its own beer, including Oscar. “We suddenly received an email from our supplier, like Romanian breweries, we Huigi and Duvel Moortgat, they can no longer get CO2,” says Director Wouter Vermeersch. “That was very bad news for us. After I objected to this, I got the message that CO2 can still be saved, but at a price that hits 40.”
Grain and electricity
This is due to an additional cost of €2.2 per container. We cannot immediately pass this on to the client. Add to this the high prices of grain (3 times) and electricity, among others, and there is not much left of our margin. Wouter Vermeersch was afraid that production would stop, but fortunately he found an alternative supplier of carbon dioxide.
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However, the manager fears bigger problems for the sector in the near future. “There are only 7 suppliers of CO2, and if they can no longer supply one by one, many breweries will have a problem. In addition, there are other sectors that need CO2. The gas is also used to make potato chips.”
Wouter Vermeersch thinks we are only at the beginning of the crisis. “We are just expanding our business. We have bought a 4-hectare site that we will build on. However, we will postpone the purchase of machinery, because the price of metal and stainless steel is rising tremendously,” said the manager. Meanwhile, the government in Germany is interfering to deal with the carbon dioxide problem. We hope our country follows us soon.”
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