Alcohol makers invest in zol while calls mount for booze ban lift

- The alcohol industry is feeling the pinch amid Mzansi's Level 3 lockdown

- Some alcohol makers have started to invest in the zol industry while others are cutting jobs as the ban of liquor sale continues to cripple the industry

- Eight people were nabbed by police for selling and transporting liquor while doing so is currently banned in Mzansi

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Alcohol makers have started to invest in the zol market as the lockdown continues to cripple the liquor industry. Ever since the lockdown, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, began in March 2020 in Mzansi, a lot of alcohol producers and retailers have shared that they have lost millions of rand in revenue since government banned the sale of alcohol.

Mzansi's leading producer of spirits and ciders, Distell, has reportedly announced that it bought a 20% stake in the local brand RETHINK. RETHINK produces a wide range of dagga-based products such as teas, skincare items and CBD oils, among other things.

Thandiswa Mazwai comments on jobs lost in the entertainment industry

Distell owns some of the country's favourite booze brands such as Savanna, Hunter's, Klipdrift and J.C. Le Roux, among others.

Business Insider reports that South Africa’s zol industry is expected to be worth R14 billion, with predictions of a surge towards R28 billion by 2024.

Heineken SA has announced that it will cut 70 jobs due to the negative impact of the ban of liquor sales in the country. The company also said it will put new investments in the country on hold due to the Covid-19 trading restrictions.

TimesLIVE said the Windhoek and Amstel beer maker stated that it will continue to review its cost and organisational structure to ensure “it is fit for the future needs of the business" particularly amid the pandemic.

Meanwhile, Western Cape premier Alan Winde has called for a decrease in the curfew hours and the reopening of sales at bars, restaurants and off-sale stores. He was speaking to the Democratic Alliance's spokesperson Siviwe Gwarhube on their online show called The Inside Track. The premier also called for the reopening of beaches.

SAPS Confiscates R640 000 in Liquor Amid Continued Restrictions

Winde expressed that he would be pushing for these proposals in the next meeting of the coronavirus command council.

As the ban of liquor sale continues to take the livelihood of those in the industry, many have resorted to selling alcohol illegally.

TimesLIVE reports that eight people were arrested by cops in Welkom on Wednesday for transportation of liquor, selling or dispensing of liquor and selling liquor in unregistered premises.

The publication said charges under Disaster Management Act adjusted alert level 3 were also added which included transportation and selling liquor during lockdown. Cops confiscated counterfeit liquor and cigarettes valued at about R2m during the arrest.

In other news, Briefly.co.za reported that DJ Fresh has accepted the blame after government took a decision towards the end of December to move the country back to Level 3 in order to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Lockdown alcohol ban is not ending any time soon, Mzansi reacts

The country had moved to Level 1 just before the festive season and eased some lockdown regulations to allow citizens to enjoy their holidays and for some businesses to open. However, the rise in the number of Covid-19 infections due to some people not adhering to the lockdown regulations forced President Cyril Ramaphosa and his Cabinet to impose stricter rules.

The veteran radio personality took to Twitter on Monday night, 28 December after Ramaphosa's address to share his thoughts on his speech. Fresh shared that South Africans had one job to do, which was to adhere to the regulations in order to flatten the curve.

DJ Fresh asked why people were surprised when Ramaphosa announced that Mzansi was moving back to Level 3. Fresh wrote:

"#FamilyMeeting WHY LE MAKALA??? #WeHadONEjob."

During the first few weeks of the festive season, videos of people grooving without masks in sight and not practising social distancing have been doing the rounds on social media. Tweeps seemed to agree with DJ Fresh's take on the matter.

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