BUYING LOCAL: Gatton Brewing and Outdoors owners Gavin and Melissa Sticklen are thankful for the local support. Picture: Dominic Elsome
BUYING LOCAL: Gatton Brewing and Outdoors owners Gavin and Melissa Sticklen are thankful for the local support. Picture: Dominic Elsome

Why the Lockyer Valley loves to brew its own booze

WHEN panic buying swept the nation, Lockyer locals went nuts for two things – ammo and home brew.

Gatton Brewing and Outdoors owner Gavin and Melissa Sticklen said sales of ammunition and home brewing kits exploded in late March.

Melissa told the Gatton Star business had slowed slightly since the pandemic, but interest in home brew was still bubbling away.

“Brewing is still full on. I’ve found a lot more people are getting into it,” Melissa said.

READ MORE: Home-brew kits selling faster than stores can restock

She said with many stuck at home, a lot of people had more time on their hands to get into new hobbies.

“(I think) they’ve got a little bit more money, so they might be getting into it for that. And also I think the price of alcohol has got a bit to do with it,” she said.

In late March, the Gatton camping shop wasn’t able to keep up with demand for the kits, with stock arriving slower than it was leaving.

Gatton Brewing and Outdoors owner Gavin Sticklen stands with the store’s ammo cabinet. Picture: Dominic Elsome
Gatton Brewing and Outdoors owner Gavin Sticklen stands with the store’s ammo cabinet. Picture: Dominic Elsome

Although some lines had improved, Melissa said spirit distillers were still hard to come across.

Camping and fishing gear sales had also increased in recent weeks as families returned to the great outdoors.

Ammunition sales on the other hand were well down from their heights in late March.

“The panic buying is over on that,” she said.

READ MORE: Gatton ammo sellers almost out of stock

Fears over Covid-19 lockdowns and supplies from the US had spurred a run on ammunition, but this had now died down.

Melissa said there had been an increase in local support for the business since the pandemic started, which was pleasing to see.

“People seem to be shopping locally. A lot of people will say to you ‘I want to support the local people’ – that’s refreshing,” she said.


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