CORONA beer production has been suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic sparking fears of a worldwide shortage.
The previously popular lager, whose coincidentally named brand has since a decline in sales since the coronavirus outbreak, will not be produced after Mexico deemed it non-essential.
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Grupo Modelo said on Thursday it will temporarily stop brewing Corona beer and other brands exported to 180 countries after its business activities were declared non-essential under a government order aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus.
The brewery said it was scaling down its operations to a "bare minimum" in line with the Mexican government's orders but suggested it could keep brewing beer if its operations were deemed to be agriculture.
Agriculture and food production are among the key sectors which are still allowed to function under Mexican government orders.
The brewer said in a statement: "If the federal government considers it appropriate to issue some clarification confirming beer as an agro-industrial product, at Grupo Modelo we are ready to execute a plan with more than 75 per cent of our staff working from home and at the same time guaranteeing the supply of beer."
Grupo Modelo operates 11 breweries in Mexico and said the suspension will go into place from Sunday.
The brewery will reduce operations to a level where they could resume once the suspension is lifted
Mexico has so far registered more than 1,500 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 50 deaths.
Non-essential activities have been suspended for at least the month of April to slow the spread of coronavirus.
Mexico's other major beer producer Heineken – which makes the Tecate and Dos Equis brands – could also stop activities on Friday, Mexican media said.
The northern state of Nuevo Leon where Heineken's Mexican operations are based said on Wednesday it would stop the distribution of beer, sparking panic-buying.
The company suffered another blow last week when plans for a $1.5billion brewery on the U.S. border were rejected in a referendum.
The plant was already two-thirds built but Mexico's government said it would not grant operating permits after the vote.
Anheuser-Busch InBev, the brewer of Corona and other beers, said last month it believes it has lost $170 million in profits due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The massive lost sales over the last few months coincides with the rising concern over the disease.
The multinational drink and brewing company is based in Belgium, but have offices around the world, including in London and New York.
It produces the Corona brand as well as Budweiser and Stella Artois.
Corona is the third most popular beer in the US behind Guinness and Heineken, according to rankings by the market research company YouGov.
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