Beer giant Anheuser-Busch stopped production at its Georgia brewery this week to instead produce drinking water for those affected by a deadly bout of historic flooding and storms in Texas and Oklahoma.
Anheuser-Busch said it had stopped beer production at its Cartersville brewery in Georgia late Wednesday night to produce 50,000 cans of water for the American Red Cross.
“Right now our production line is running emergency drinking water instead of beer,” Cartersville brewery manager Rob Haas told NBC News.
The Cartersville brewery produces cans of emergency relief water a few times a year, Haas said, partnering with the American Red Cross to provide to places in need within the United States.
“It’s something we’re uniquely positioned to do in a very timely period,” he said.
About 2,000 cases, each carrying 24 cans, are en route to communities in Texas and Oklahoma, he added. The water is expected to reach those areas within the next few days.
Red Cross spokesman Jordan Scott said the organization had been working with Anheuser-Busch, one of their disaster relief partners, to iron out the logistics of the water shipments and what areas they were needed the most.
“Oklahoma and Texas are in an unprecedented situation,” Scott said. “There are a lot of folks in need and everyone’s coming forward to help out.”
Scott said the additional drinking water would be “critical” to relief efforts in the area.
Heavy storms and floods in Texas and Oklahoma this week have left at least 25 people dead, more than a dozen missing, and thousands of homes damaged. The rainfall was enough to fully reverse a drought afflicting the area for the last five years, according to meteorologists.
Anheuser-Busch has 12 breweries in the United States and is the maker of several major brands including Budweiser, Michelob ULTRA, Beck’s, Kirin and O’Doul’s.