COVID UPDATE: INDIAN LIQUOR SHOPS STAY SHUT, TIGER BEER SUPPORTS ASIAN ON-TRADE, CHENGDU WINE SHOW DELAYED AGAIN
By Siulan Law Mathews DipWSET
Source: Tiger Beer
In India, the ministry of home affairs (MHA) issued a guideline asking district magistrates across India to enforce a strict ban on the sale of liquor, gutka and tobacco products.
The new guideline will halt Assam and Meghalaya state governments’ plan to reopen liquor shops with an intention to stem bootleg and grey market.
In its notification, the MHA said, “There should be strict ban on sale of liquor, gutka, tobacco etc. and spitting should be strictly prohibited.”
It further said that all these directives shall be enforced by the district magistrate through fines and penal action as prescribed in the Disaster Management Act 2005.
Liquor shops all over India were shut down since the nationwide lockdown came into force from 25 March.
Since then alcohol prices in India’s grey market have more than quadrupled and online searches for how to make home-made alcohol have soared.
There were also reports about addicts suffering from withdrawal symptoms and some committed suicide.
In Singapore and Malaysia, the Heineken-owned Tiger beer brand, has launched #SupportOurStreets initiative across Asia to help local pubs, restaurants, coffee shops and food courts hit by COVID-19 pandemic.
Heineken Malaysia has pledged MYR1.5million (USD343,200) and the Asia Pacific Breweries Singapore has pledged SGD1m (USD704,000) in the form of cash funds and vouchers that people can redeem at their favourite local food & beverage outlets once safe distancing measures are over.
This will help local food & beverage businesses to generate more cash to keep them afloat now and to restore their business once safe distancing measures end.
The initiative will expand to Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam in the coming weeks.
In China, despite that the spread of the coronavirus has largely been contained, the central government has directed that public gatherings including marathon, religious services, trade fairs and exhibitions should be temporarily suspended.
The organizer of China Food & Drinks Exhibition, arguably China’s biggest wine and spirits show, has announced that this year’s fair has again been postponed and will not happen between 21 and 23 May in Chengdu,
The 2020 Chengdu show was originally scheduled on 26 to 28 March, but was postponed to 21 to 23 May due to COVID-19.
The organiser said they will announce new schedule as soon as possible.
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