Heineken has temporarily reduced the support for independent convenience stores provided through its field sales team.

Asked when its team would be returning to stores following lockdown, a spokesperson for the major brewer confirmed that some of its team responsible for providing in-store support for independent shops remained unavailable due to furloughing. The spokesperson also revealed that those that were not furloughed were redirected to provide support to the supermarkets instead.

The decision comes as stores continue to report shortages of key Heineken lines including Fosters and Strongbow.

“A number of our Heineken colleagues have been placed on Furlough at this current time. In response to your question, we are continuously reviewing deployment of our field sales team given the current situation. Currently our field sales team have been redeployed into grocery retail, however this is only short term, we are fully committed to the convenience channel.”

The company did not provide a date as to when it would resume in-store support for the independent convenience channel.