There’s only one company that manufactures beer kegs from American steel — it’s based in Pottstown and employs 20 people. That’s down from the previous work force of 30 people. The numbers were slashed because of competition coming from exports out of China, France and Germany. Unfortunately, President Donald’s Trump’s recent levies on imported steel won’t help.
The American Keg Co. of Pottstown — its prices undercut by kegs imported from China, France and Germany — slashed its workforce by a third earlier this year. Only 20 people now work where 30 were once employed.
“The cost of an imported keg just barely covers the raw materials on one of ours,” said CEO Paul Czachor. “It’s very difficult to compete.”So when President Trump suddenly announced 25 percent tariffs on imported steel, many at American Keg thought it would help level the playing field. Now the CEO thinks otherwise, writes Sam Wood on philly.com.
Trump signed an order Thursday imposing sweeping new levies on steel and aluminum produced outside the nation’s borders. He exempted steel and aluminum from Canada and Mexico from the new tax.
“Tariffs will inadvertently drive the price of American steel higher,” said Czachor. “Within a year, we might have to raise our prices so our kegs cost 30 percent more than an import. That puts the whole business in jeopardy.”
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