Layoffs hit beer distributor in Oklahoma

The oil crisis combined with the coronavirus pandemic has resulted in the layoff of more workers in Oklahoma. The impact has reached a beverage company in Oklahoma City and Muskogee where up to 75 workers were laid off this week.

A & B Beverage Company, LLC, a family-owned business located at 5500 W. Reno,Suite 200 in Oklahoma City and 3901 Tull Avenue in Muskogee issued a WARN notice with the Oklahoma Office of Workforce Development.

The company distributes a wide range of beer, wine, liquor and non-alcoholic products throughout all 77 counties in Oklahoma and 16 counties in Arkansas through its associated companies A&B Distributors of Arkansas, Inc., A&B Beverage, and Specialty Brands with locations in Muskogee and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and Lowell, Arkansas according to the firm’s website.

A letter sent to Gov. Kevin Stitt by the Tulsa law firm Riggs and Abney that represents A & B Beverage explained that some of the 32 workers in Muskogee and 56 in Oklahoma will be laid off “due to the unforeseen loss of a major customer.”

The major customer was Vital Pharmaceuticals Inc., the maker of Bang and it notified A & B in late April it intended to terminate its contract.

“The announcement made in the VPX letter—forces us to make an announcement that we sincerely wish could be avoided: there will be layoffs at your job-location due to this unforeseen business circumstance,” stated A & B in notifying its workers.

Source: Office of Workforce Development