Beer drinkers beware: President Trump’s push to bring back jobs to America’s rust belt could drive up the price of your favorite lager or pilsner — should he place tariffs on aluminum imports, a report says.
Tim Weiner, senior commodity risk manager at Molson Coors Brewing Co. and its MillerCoors LLC unit, believes this may very well happen after the commander-in-chief expedited an investigation into the price of all aluminum coming into the US earlier this year.
“If there are duties on aluminum coming to this country, it will obviously get passed on to us and the customer,” he explained at an industry conference in Chicago this week, according to Bloomberg.
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“Our prices will go up,” he said.
Roughly 60 percent of the beer that’s produced by MillerCoors — the second-largest brewer behind Anheuser-Busch — is packaged in aluminum cans, Weiner said.
If federal authorities choose to take action against the price of the aluminum, and President Trump decides to place tariffs on imports, this could spell trouble for them and the estimated 5,000 brewers across the country.
“It depends on whether it’s politically motivated, or business motivated,” Weiner said “I think there’s political motivation for putting some tariffs on.”
Trump’s efforts to drive down the price of aluminum stems from his campaign promises to stop trade abuses and bring jobs back to the US.
His decision in April to move forward with the import investigation came after the Obama administration filed a complaint with the World Trade Organization in January.
An aluminum tax and broad restrictions on imports would ultimately be bad business for suppliers — especially since the public’s desire to drink a beer from a can is as high as its ever been, Weiner said.
“We don’t expect that to change,” he said. “We’re giving our customers what they want, and what they want is cans.”
With Post wires