Corona beer production has been suspended temporarily due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The lager has been deemed as non-essential in Mexico, where it is produced, and its brewer, Grupo Modelo (part of the ABInbev brewing group), said it is now scaling down operations to a “bare minimum” to keep in line with orders from the Mexican government. 

The brewer, which operates 11 breweries in Mexico, plans to reduce operations over the next few days but said it would ensure it is ready to resume production once the suspension from the Mexican government is lifted. 

It is possible beer might be re-categorised under agricultural business, in which case it may shift over to the “essential businesses” list and the suspension would be lifted. 

In a statement the brewer said: “If the federal government considers it appropriate to issue some clarification confirming beer as an agro-industrial product, at Grupo Modelo we are ready to execute a plan with more than 75% of our staff working from home and at the same time guaranteeing the supply of beer.”

Grupo Modelo produces Corona beer and other beer brands and it exports these to 180 countries.

Corona beer sales are reported to have fallen globally due to the brand’s unfortunate connection to the virus, albeit in name only. 

At the end of February ABInbev reportedly said the coronavirus outbreak had led to a profit loss of £132 million.