Beer Institute Launches to Shine a Light on Shady Aluminum Pricing

WASHINGTON, Nov. 20, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today, the Beer Institute, the oldest national trade organization representing the beer industry, launched to educate consumers and lawmakers about the Midwest Premium (MWP). The MWP is a dubious pricing system that allows aluminum producers to charge end-users a tariff on non-tariffed metal. Aluminum producers are able to engage in this questionable behavior because there is currently no regulatory body overseeing the usage of the MWP.

“The Midwest Premium has evolved into a black box that artificially drives up the price of aluminum for end-users, including the maker of your favorite beer," said Brian Crawford, president and CEO of the Beer Institute. “Over the last five years, the American beverage industry has paid nearly $2 billion in Section 232 aluminum tariffs, in large part due to the MWP, which allows aluminum companies to charge inflated prices with no oversight. is a step toward holding companies accountable, bringing transparency and competition back to the aluminum market and delivering relief for the brewers and countless other industries hurt by inflated aluminum prices.”

You can visit to learn more about how this pricing system hurts American industries like beer.

U.S. brewers continue to face high costs due to Section 232 aluminum tariffs which are compounded by the MWP. During the pandemic, demand for aluminum bottles and cans skyrocketed, and now more than 74 percent of all beer produced in the United States is packaged in an aluminum can or bottle.

Research conducted by HARBOR Aluminum on behalf of the Beer Institute found that the U.S. beverage industry paid $1.893 billion in Section 232 tariffs on 9.042 million metric tons of aluminum since the implementation of the tariffs. Of that amount, only $126 million (7 percent) went to the U.S. Treasury. HARBOR Aluminum estimates U.S. rolling mills, U.S. smelters and Canadian smelters received $1.767 billion (93 percent) of the total by charging end-users – such as U.S. brewers – a tariff-burdened price regardless of whether the metal was meant to be tariffed based on its content or origin. 

Last July, the CEOs of four of America’s largest brewers sent a letter to President Biden calling on him to repeal Section 232 tariffs on aluminum. They said, “tariffs reverberate throughout the supply chain, raising production costs for aluminum end-users and ultimately impacting consumer prices.”


The Beer Institute is a national trade association for the American brewing industry, representing brewers, beer importers and industry suppliers—an industry that supports nearly 2.4 million jobs and provides more than $409 billion to the American economy. First founded in 1862 as the U.S. Brewers Association, the Beer Institute is committed today to developing sound public policy and to the values of civic duty and personal responsibility. For additional updates from the Beer Institute, visit our website, follow @BeerInstitute on Twitter, like the Beer Institute on Facebook, and follow the Beer Institute on Instagram.


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