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Venezuelan officials step in to keep beer flowing amid labour dispute at largest distributor

CARACAS, Venezuela – A government official hopes to help solve a dispute between Venezuelan labour unions and the country’s largest beer distributor before it begins to leave brew-lovers thirsty.

Empresas Polar is embroiled in a fight with union workers demanding better wages. Workers have shut down breweries and limited distribution of the small bottles of light beer that are favoured in Venezuela.

Federal ombudsman Tarek William Saab met Tuesday with labour leaders and officials at the company.

Polar distributes about 80 per cent of the country’s beer. While there are no signs of shortages on shelves so far, the company says it is struggling to get deliveries out to the central part of Venezuela.