A shortage of aluminum cans across the US is causing unexpected problems for brewers and driving up prices for drinkers, the Los Angeles Times website reported Wednesday.
California’s aging recycling system is reportedly not collecting enough aluminum cans, which can contain up to 73 percent of the material from recycled waste, while recycling rates in California have dropped 20 percent in five years, from 91 percent in 2016 to 73 percent in 2021, according to the California Department of Resources Recovery and Reuse. More than 766 million aluminum cans ended up in landfill in 2016, according to state data. Last year, there were 2.8 billion, enough to fill about 31,000 backyard pools.
Without a steady supply of aluminum cans, experts say, the beer industry could grind to a halt, leaving small businesses vulnerable.
Broomfield, Colo.-based Ball Co., one of the nation’s largest aluminum can makers, said last fall that it would no longer handle small or even medium-sized orders amid supply shortages, the report said.