WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - As restaurants and bars shut down, and even now as they’re reopening with caution, have you noticed you’re drinking from home more often? The aluminum can industry certainly has.
At A.J. Missert in Watertown, the warehouse is usually full of beverages in aluminum cans. That's not the case these days.
"Normally, all the product would be out here. It would hold maybe 20,000 to 25,000 cases. As you can see, it's barren," said Dave Missert Sr., A.J. Missert Inc. treasurer & secretary.
There's an aluminum can shortage brought on by more people staying in to drink as well as panic-buying of beer as everything shut down.
"We're on allocation. So what we order from our suppliers, we might get 10 percent of that order," said Dave Missert Jr., A.J. Missert Inc. general manager.
A.J. Missert delivers canned beer to 800 stores, restaurants, and bars in the area.
But with the shortage of aluminum cans and demand at an all time high, business has been out of whack.
This is normally the busiest time of year at A.J. Missert. About 40 percent of its business is done in the 14 weeks of summer, but not quite this year.
"We go out to the warehouse, we look at an empty wall where product used to sit. We used to carry 40-45 days of inventory. Now we're carrying five, maybe," said Dave Jr.
And it's not just Missert experiencing this shortage.
"Everybody is suffering. Pepsi, Coke, Budweiser, Miller. It doesn't make any difference. If it's in a can, it's in short supply," said Dave Sr.
But the increased demand for cans isn't bad for everyone.
"Since the shutdown, our business has increased probably double what it was prior," said Bill Huchzermeier, Makes Cents co-owner.
Recycling businesses are doing their part to help the shortage.
"As fast as the aluminum cans come in our door, we process them and get them right back to the processing plant that reuses them," said Huchzermeier.
But until the supply and demand levels even out and companies can catch up, Dave Missert Sr. says, “Like my father told me a long time ago, you cannot sell out of an empty apple cart.”