The Aftermath of the Partial Government Shutdown for Breweries

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The owner of Mother’s Brewing Company in Springfield, Missouri thinks it could be a while before the industry bounces back from the government shutdown.

The government may be open again temporarily, but some of the issues the shutdown caused could linger. 

The beer brewing industry in Springfield has suffered a bit of a setback over the past month with getting new products approved. 

Owner and Founder of Mother’s Brewing Company, Jeff Schrag, said in order to roll out new beers, they have to be approved by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax Trade Bureau (TTB). 

“They’ve been shut down now for thirty-some days. Probably everybody was like us. We were like ‘Holy smokes, let’s get everything submitted that we possibly can in case this continues’, Schrag said. “They’re going to have a huge backlog of things, and we don’t know how long it will take them to get back to their old schedule, but I personally think maybe a year.”

Operations Chief Stuart Murr said this brought some of their releases to a screeching halt. 

“We had a couple beers that were supposed to be coming out in February. We had submitted the labels for approval with the TTB in plenty of time under normal circumstances,” Murr said.”They were in process when the government shutdown, and that stopped.”

That left about 150 barrels waiting for approval, which equates to about 8,266 six-packs on hold.

That puts a big strain on finances for them. 

“We had planned on a certain amount of income – a certain amount of revenue coming in February, and now that’s not going to happen,” said Murr. “Cashflow gets to be a real serious issue. Can we pay our employees? Can we do everything we need to do, can we keep the lights on for all of that month? So yeah, it affects a lot of things.”

Schrag said that hopefully what this means is they just get February’s revenue simply in a different month, saying that money won’t go away.

Their goal is not to delay any paychecks for their staff. 

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