“We still have Jameson but don’t rely on it for volume any longer,” Bailey Smith, Co-Owner of R Bar and Bud Rips told Gambit, a Louisiana-based free weekly local newspaper there, adding that Tullamore DEW was likely to encounter supply problems too shortly.
Sarah Manowitz, the General Manager of another bar in the area, Oz, pointed out that Irish whiskeys were not the only beverages suffering from a supply shortage.
“Trying to get any type of Tequila, Crown Royal and Maker’s Mark (whiskey) has been a feat,” she explained.
And Gambit reported that, “There have been supply chain shortages affecting the bar industry throughout the pandemic — hitting everything from liquor to glasses and pour spouts”.
According to the newspaper, “The supply chain and shipping issues stem from the closures of some factories and manufacturing plants early in the pandemic as well as a lack of workers in some places due to poor working conditions, low wages and a virus that has killed many workers. When bars reopened after being shut down earlier in the pandemic, that created a demand that supply chains couldn’t meet, making a nearly impossible situation for bars and others in the alcohol industry even harder. Because of the shortages local distributors are having to tell long-time clients that they’re currently unable to provide them with certain products and may not have a timeframe on when that will change”.
Sarah Sarah Manowitz had found everybody to be ‘understaffed’, adding that even the sales reps had been “driving trucks”.
As the city gears up for its first Carnival season since 2020, bar owners and managers plan to just make do with whatever they have or whatever they can acquire in time for the celebration, Gambit reports.
However, Irish whiskey-lovers may feel inclined to widen their repertoire in response.
For Jordan Dauterive, a French Quarter account manager for local distributor Southern Eagle Sales & Service, said, “I know there’s a Jameson shortage right now … that’s not to say that these other Irish whiskey brands that are in the market aren’t gonna see an uptick because people who like drinking Irish whiskey will drink Irish whiskey.”
In a statement to Drinks Industry Ireland Irish Distillers explained, “As with many export businesses, we’ve faced intermittent and localised out of stock(s) as a result of global shipping bottlenecks caused by rebounding global consumer demand.
“This situation is not an industry-specific issue. Our teams and our suppliers have responded with flexibility and agility to mitigate supply issues and we’re doing very well in this context.”
New Orleans’ Mardis Gras tops the ‘Booziest Holidays’ in the US list with an average of 4.5 drinks consumed on ‘Fat Tuesday’ (the last day of the festival this year) according to a survey of over 1,000 Americans by American Addiction Centers about individuals’ alcohol consumption during these festive occasions.