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BRATTLEBORO — The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many local businesses to shift their business practices to survive these trying times. Whetstone Craft Beers, in Brattleboro, was not immune to the virus, finding that many outlets were shut down during the early months of the pandemic.

"Our hand was forced a little bit with COVID and everything shutting down and we really didn't have an outlet to sell our beer," said Connor Busch, Whetstone's head brewer. "To continue to sell our beer, we invested in a canning line so we could continue to sell in package stores."

The canning process presented a new set of challenges for the growing brewery when it came to perfecting the assembly line.

"First of all, we had to fit the canning line in our space, so we had to do some renovations, which was not originally part of the plan to have one this quickly," Connor said. "The canning line requires very specific temperatures and carbonation levels for the beers, so we had to get that dialed in."

The first set of cans started rolling off the line about a month ago as the brewery worked to get all the kinks out of the operation.

So, if the pandemic forces businesses to close down again, Whetstone Craft Beers will be ready to keep the beer sales flowing.

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