Shoppers looking for specific spirits for their New Year’s celebrations might need to embrace this theme: You can’t always get what you want.

Like other industries, getting all the supplies they want has become a challenge for retailers selling beer, wine and other spirits, as well as certain non-alcoholic beverages, said Lance Lively, executive director of the Texas Package Store Association. Its members include liquor stores, distilleries and distributors, among others.

“We’re not immune to it, certainly,” Lively said of supply issues that have developed in recent months as the country continues to deal with the effects of COVID-19. Stores didn’t always know why they couldn’t get certain products — maybe it was a shortage of aluminum cans or employee issues at the ports or distilleries.

“It’s just kind of hit or miss,” he said.

In Longview, Vivek Patel said the shelves are stocked full at Heritage Wine & Spirits, which he and his brother, Nishil, own on Eastman Road. Shoppers, however, might have to be willing to try something new if their favorite beverages aren’t on those shelves.

“It has been bad,” since about August, he said, with some products available but others not. Fine wines have been affected by fires in California, for instance. Products coming from overseas and south of the border also have been a challenge, and the availability of craft beers has been affected by problems getting aluminum cans. In some cases no one seems to really know why some of the product shortages have occurred.

“I think it’s a bunch of all of it put together that’s causing it,” he said, and it’s affecting all the stores selling wine, beer and other spirits.

Sales have been great, he said, and he had stocked up in advance of the New Year’s season, but shoppers might have to be willing to try a different tequila or wine than what they’re used to, he said. Staff members can recommend alternatives.

“Be willing to try something new,” he advised shoppers if they can’t find their favorite beverage.

Lively said he’s offering similar advice to consumers and retailers. The good news, he said, is there’s not one vodka or rum, for instance.

“Liquor stores have thousands upon thousands of SKUs of different products,” he said.

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