Unless European CO2 manufacturers step up the production of carbon dioxide, which enhances beverages with mouthwatering bubbles, beer and soda sales risk falling flat, Danish Radio reported.
While the demand for fizzy drinks has gone up amid the sunshine and warmth, deliveries of CO2 have stalled across Europe, resulting in a looming crisis, Denmark's largest brewery, Carlsberg, confirmed.
"We have had the best May in a decade in Denmark and the rest of Northern Europe. Naturally, this created pressure on the breweries, which we are generally happy with… However, because of the storage issues a lot of CO2 producers around Europe are experiencing, there has been a real problem delivering carbon dioxide for brewing beer and producing soda," Carlsberg press manager Kasper Elbjørn said.
Denmark's largest brewery is ready to step in and alleviate the imminent crisis, owing to the fact that its main brewery in the town of Fredericia on the Jutland Peninsula is self-sufficient in terms of CO2, as the precious bubbles are captured during the brewing process. Still, the "beer crisis" has put the brewery under increased stress.
"We've had 100,000 tons of malt delivered during the weekend and we've been working flat out to brew more beer so that more CO2 can be produced in the fermentation tanks," Kasper Elbjørn.
While Carlsberg still has its bubbles, the CO2 shortage has been particularly acute for beer-happy Englishmen, which Kasper Elbjørn ascribed to the fact that England has only one carbon dioxide producer on which they all depend.
To relieve the crisis and provide beer aficionados with more of their beloved beverage, it may make sense for Carlsberg to share its CO2 with other breweries.
"To ensure long-term beer supplies if the CO2 shortage continues, we are currently investigating alternatives. We are also ready to share CO2 with the other Carlsberg breweries. We hope, of course, that the producers can control their product," Kasper Elbjørn stressed.
Founded in 1847, Carlsberg produces a variety of beer brands, including Tuborg and Russia's best-selling beer Baltika. It employs over 40,000 people.