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This is one of those ripple effects from our economic lockdown.  Fewer people are driving.  Gasoline is blended with ethanol.  Oil has fallen through the floor.  Ethanol production has plummeted.  A byproduct of ethanol production is carbon dioxide.  It’s often sold to brewers and pop bottlers.  The CO2 produces the fizz. 

The big producers can probably ride out a price increase but may pass along the cost to consumers.

Because there isn’t as much CO2 available, the price is shooting up.  For small breweries this could be a burden leading to the closure of the business.  The big producers can probably ride out a price increase but may pass along the cost to consumers.  And without as much competition from the small brewers, if you want some suds you’re only choice is to pay the higher price.  A friend jokes really big drinkers won’t care or will switch to wine.

Where I come from, sweet soft drinks are called pop.  Soda was always a New York City thing when I was growing up but soda appears to be supplanting pop across much of the country.  I haven’t heard pop used much since I left for college in the early 1980s.

Again, big players can pay the premium for CO2, which means I likely won’t need to drink Dr. Pepper when it’s flat.  There are some very fine specialty makers of “soda pop”.  Again, the smaller competitors could be severely impacted.

Which would be a shame.  The smaller producers often make some of the most unique flavors.  I’ve had birch beer and root beer bottled by smaller outfits and these often pack a wallop when it comes to flavor.  The big name brands tend to homogenize the taste.  Once more, the economic calamity favors the big guys over the little fellows.

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