A shortage of CO2 gas across Europe continues to affect the supply and production of food and drinks. Have you noticed the impact just yet?
The lack of available CO2, which puts the ‘fizz’ into some alcoholic and soft drinks, has led to Asda actually rationing the amount of fizzy drinks available from its online store.
On 1 July, it was reported that Asda’s online customers were limited to purchasing six bottles or multipacks of brands such as Coca-Cola, Fanta and Pepsi.
Food and drink affected
It’s not been the best timing for a CO2 shortage. The World Cup and the recent heatwave have combined to produce a higher demand for beer, with many people throwing BBQ parties and enjoying England’s success.
And it’s not just drinks that a lack of the gas can impact on – CO2 is also used in the slaughtering of livestock, as well as extending the shelf-life in fresh meat and salad packaging.
A long-term problem?
So, could we actually run out of fizzy soft drinks, beer and meat!?
While the temporary closure of some UK and European factories has curbed production, it seems unlikely supplies could completely run out unless the shortage became extremely prolonged.
I recently spoke with someone inside the industry (who preferred to remain anonymous) and was told:
“Suppliers are now sourcing CO2 from as far away as Northern Africa. They’re doing their best to keep customers happy by prioritising the most popular products – so customers may struggle to find lesser-known brands on the shelves in the coming weeks”
With the resulting depleted stock and inconsistent production, it means that shoppers may struggle to find the usual deals and promotions they might expect – especially during popular summer sporting events.
Have you noticed the CO2 shortage during your weekly shop? If so, have you had to spend more as a result? Let us know if you’ve been affected.