The 21st Show

Illinois Breweries Cope With COVID-19, Can Shortage


We are quickly encroaching upon the one year mark since the sudden closure of all bars and restaurants across the state because of COVID-19 restrictions. Overnight, keg sales were put on pause for the indefinite time being. As breweries diverted their beer to cans early in the pandemic, by the time we reached summer, there were signs of a can shortage. As the demand has persisted, so has the shortage, and is expected to linger, at least for the first half of 2021, and has pushed some breweries to return to their roots by bottling their beer.

The 21st spoke to brewery owners across Illinois to hear more about how the pandemic has affected their livelihoods.


Javier Lopez, co-founder and co-owner of Casa Humilde Cerverceria in Chicago

Anthony Benjamin, owner and operator at Triptych Brewing in Savoy 

Nick Bowes, general manager at Bent River Brewing Company in Rock Island


Prepared for web by Zainab Qureshi

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