Workers at Origlio, Muller, and Penn, which are the big three distributors of beer in the Philadelphia region, have gone on strike. The workers, members of the Teamsters Local 830, voted 308-40 on June 18th to reject a proposed contract from management according to a post on the local’s Facebook page. A member of the union we messaged shared that this is the first time the local has held a strike.
We spoke to a local restaurant owner in Conshohocken who told us that there wasn’t much notice and that the online ordering systems have been turned off. Two other restaurant owners had no idea it was happening until we asked about it.
What brands will this impact? Origlio controls the distribution of brands like Coors, Corona, Allagash, Amstel, Blue Moon, Angry Orchard, Guinness, and Heineken. Muller has brands like Miller Lite, Pabst Blue Ribbon, and Yards. Penn carries brands such as Budweiser, Natural Light, Busch, and Michelob. In addition, all three carry a variety of national and local craft beers and other products like seltzers. If you click the brand link for each one you will see everything they offer.
Not every beer is carried by the big three. There are other distributors in the area that offer portfolios of international beers, smaller national brands, and beers from local brewers. Many local breweries do their own distribution.
Bars, restaurants, and your local beer stores are limited to the inventory that the businesses can keep on-site. Most order for the upcoming week and receive a weekly delivery. They do not sit on a large inventory.
If the strike carries on for more than a week, you will likely see the most impact on the big American national brands. While there may be an issue getting nationally distributed craft beers, that will be less noticeable as they can be replaced by other crafts that are available from the smaller distributors and local breweries. However, it isn’t like anyone planned for this, and the smaller distributors and local breweries will still be limited by their own inventory and what they can physically distribute if they receive more orders than usual.
Let us know when you can’t find your favorite beer!