SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — There’s been a shortage of toilet paper and cleaning products during the pandemic, but there’s another item that might be hard to find, aluminum cans.
“There’s a lot of consumer product companies that are seeing huge spikes in demand and that’s primarily the reason for the shortage,” said Cy Chesterman, president of Chesterman Company. “Aluminum cans were in tight supply before this pandemic hit. It’s obviously affected aluminum can supply more that we’ve seen some of our other suppliers.”
Chesterman Company is based in Sioux City and has a distribution center in Sioux Falls. They produce Coca-Cola products, but you may not be able to find some of them on store shelves.
“We’ve limited some supply of some of the flavors that are not available. We chose to not produce those so we could focus on staying in stock for some of our more popular brands and flavors,” Chesterman said. “The ones we’re trying to get back into the quickest is Mello Yello, caffeine-free Diet Coke, Cherry Coke and some of our Fanta flavors.”
Coca-Cola responded on Twitter to people asking where some of its products were. The company said quote “we are seeing greater demand for products consumed at home, and we are taking measures to adapt to the demand. We are working closely with our customers and our suppliers to mitigate the challenge during this unprecedented time.”
“We saw it instantly,” Chesterman said. “It was probably the highest in March. March and April were very high demand months for us. That time period was pretty tough, but it still continues, to a lesser extent now, but we see it continuing.”
Chesterman Company does not produce the cans or lids for its products, but suppliers are having trouble keeping up with the demand across the country.