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Record orders cause Mississippi ABC to suspend new alcohol orders to clear backlog



(Photo by O'Dea at Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0, CC BY-SA 4.0,

Because of a backlog created by a record number of orders for alcoholic beverages since March, the Mississippi Department of Revenue and Alcoholic Beverage Control is suspending retailers’ ability to place new and special orders for 10 days beginning Friday, July 10.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis in Mississippi, ABC has shipped over 1,330,000 cases of wines and spirits for an average daily shipment of 19,112 cases. This represents an increase of nearly 300,000 cases shipped compared to the same period in 2019 for an increase of 29%.

In a notice from the Mississippi Department of Revenue, the agency said suppliers have been struggling to maintain inventory nationwide. The ABC warehouse lines are designed to hold 17,000 cases, which leaves ABC employees continuously filling the lines on top of shipping record cases every night. The demand has taken its toll on not only ABC’s equipment but also its employees. ABC added two overtime days in April, May, and June for six additional shifts for both the day crew and night crew.

To further complicate matters, ABC has experienced out-of-stock inventory for several items suppliers are having difficulty keeping in stock due to the inflated demands. Where Mississippi permittees are accustomed to receiving liquor orders within one to two days of ordering (excluding weekends and holidays), customers are now waiting one week on average for deliveries to arrive.

To better serve all Mississippi liquor permittees, beginning Friday, July 10, at 2 a.m., the Mississippi Department of Revenue is suspending all new liquor orders and special orders until Monday, July 20, 2020.

Permittees will still have access to other functions online, but there will be no access to the “New Order” links for retail and special orders. This will allow all liquor orders already placed to be shipped out to clear the system of orders, which will in turn minimize the delays in shipping that all liquor permittees are currently experiencing. It will also allow ABC to restock inventory on numerous out-of-stock and understocked items.

Mississippi ABC prides itself on providing great customer service, and strongly believes this strategy will aid in its ability to return to the normal delivery schedule that was expected before the high demands from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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