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Here's why it's getting harder to find Coca Cola products across Metro Vancouver

Have you noticed some empty store shelves?

Looking for a cold soft drink at the corner store?

The selection may be a bit limited as one of the world's largest brands and beverage companies is facing down with local striking workers across B.C.

The Coca-Cola workers' strike started about a month ago and its effect is beginning to be seen on local shelves at grocery stores, convenience stores, and other shops.

What's out of stock appears to depend on the location. V.I.A. checked more than a dozen different stores ranging from a gas station convenience store to a big box national chain.

For example, diet caffeine-free Coke wasn't at any locations, while the classic cola was at most (though not all) stores, but not in all packages (12 packs of cans or 2-litre bottles were often in stock, but smaller options were less common).

Signs on some shelves in Vancouver note there's a shortage, but don't explain why.

"Due to unforeseen circumstances, Coca-Cola Products may be unavailable. We apologize for the inconvenience this may have caused," reads one at a Save-on-Foods.

At a Shoppers Drug Mart, a similar sign apologizes for the inconvenience as well.

"Due to vendor supply challenge, selected Coca-Cola Products may not be available," it explains in front of an empty shelf.

When asked about the situation, London Drugs declined to comment.

Some distribution appears to be continuing in Metro Vancouver. Coca-Cola has been served two cease and desist orders from the B.C. Labour Relations Board according to the Teamsters 213 Union after the company was caught using illegal workers.

At the same time, a release from grocery store union UFCW247 told workers in July that while Coca-Cola products are considered "hot goods," they were still being distributed through a Loblaw distribution center (Loblaw Companies Ltd. owns Superstore, T&T, No Frills, and other brands).

"Unfortunately, this means that we must continue to handle the product as normal.  We are required to treat the product like any other product as we do not have the collective agreement right to refuse to handle it," reads the statement, while encouraging the boycott of Coke products.

Coca-Cola lists five manufacturing locations in Canada, including the Richmond plant. The next-closest is in Calgary. There are also almost a dozen distribution centres across the province, according to the company's website.

V.I.A. has reached out to several grocery store companies and will update the story with new information as it's available.

With files from Vikki Hui