Beer on the way

Yeshey Lhadon

Beer lovers should see their stock replenished soon. There is a shortage of locally produced beer, especially the Druk 11000 and Druk Lager.
Bhutan Brewery Private Limited (BBPL), that brews Lager and 11000 resumed production since yesterday with less than 40 percent of their critical employees who are now camped at the factory. The brewery remained shut since the government announced a lockdown on August 11.
The factory didn’t have domestic stock to meet the demand of consumers during lockdown. Most of BBPL’s critical employees were locked in as they were in the red zone area, Phuentsholing.
The head of sales and marketing department of BBPL, Kinley Dorji, said that beer will be dispatched in a few days. The company will produce lesser bottled beer due to shortage of empty bottles and more canned beer on alternative days with limited manpower. “We can’t meet the demand,” he said.
BBPL in normal times dispatched between 20 and 25 truckloads of beer a day. “It would be great even if we could dispatch eight truckloads of beer at such a time,” said Kinley.
BBPL used to produce 11,000 cases of bottled beer and 5,000 cases of scanned with almost 500 employees everyday. The senior manager said that they could only produce between 2,000 and 3,000 cases of bottled beer and 3,000 cases of canned beer with less than 100 people.
The beers will be distributed according to token numbers of the liquor agents. Those agents who have made their payment before lockdown would get their stocks first.
Many liquor agents in Thimphu ran out of beer. Khem Raj Chhetri, a liquor vendor in Thimphu sold the last stock of Druk 11000 and Lager beer two weeks ago. He normally sells at least 40 cases of beers every day. “I think I could sell a truckload of beer in a day given the demand,” he said.
Another liquor dealer, Wangmo, finished her beer stock during the lockdown. She delivered beer to consumers at home during the lockdown. “We sell more beers compared to hard drinks,” she said. She deposited Nu 3 million to procure beer from Pasakha
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