Cans, once the exception, are now the rule. Thank physics (and the lousy market for recycled glass). Aluminum cans are lightweight, compact, and stackable—everything bottles are not. Cans also are light-impermeable, meaning skunkifying sunlight can’t reach the beer inside. But don’t count out bottles yet. President Trump’s 10 percent tariff on imported aluminum from China, Japan, and other countries means brewers will likely start to pay more for cans, since U.S. mills can’t currently meet domestic production demands. (Small brewers pay around 10-12 cents per printed can.) Indeed, Trump’s tariffs could bump up the cost of canning all beverages in the U.S. by $256 million, according to the American Beverage Association. Tariffs of 25 percent are also being imposed on some imported steel, which will likely mean higher costs for brewers looking to buy anything from new fermenting tanks to new kegs.
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