Sorry, Corona Beer Was Deemed A Non-Essential Business Item

Production of the popular Mexican beer was deemed non-essential as part of the country’s shutdown aimed at slowing the spread of the virus.

The production of Corona, the popular Mexican beer, will be temporarily halted because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Parent company Modelo Grupo announced plans to stop production of beer late Thursday, after the Mexican government this week expanded its shutdown of businesses deemed non-essential, as well as bar gatherings of more than 50 people. The company also exports brands including Modelo and Pacifico beers.

As of Friday, Mexico has more than 1,500 confirmed coronavirus cases, including 50 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins.

Modelo Grupo added in its statement that beer should be essential, citing hundreds of thousands of people who would be affected by suspending beer sales. If the government allowed the company to resume production, it said it would operate with 75% of staff working from home. In the meantime, the company said it’s donating 300,000 bottles of hand sanitizer.

Despite initial reports in February, the unfortunate coincidence of “Corona” sharing the name of the deadly virus did not negatively affect sales of the beer. In the U.S., alcohol sales have been rocketing as more Americans have been ordered to stay home, and more local businesses and restaurants have shut down or reduced service.