When in spring 1941 the CBK realised that further gravity cuts were required to maintain the supply of beer, it wasn't possible to do so without the approval of the Wehrmacht.
"It was agreed that a gravity reduction should be introduced in the short term, with effect from 8 April next with a tenth part, with which, according to Mr. Biel, the German Wehrmacht agrees, while further gravity reduction will be discussed with the N.A.C. in the intended meeting on April 4th. The discussion with the gentlemen, who were present on March 27th, will be continued on April 9th. In this last meeting, the following topics will be discussed:
a. with what turnover is it considered possible to meet the demand and what gravity is necessary for this;
b. an arrangement for a proportional distribution for the customers if the entire demand cannot be met and all measures (including sales arrangement and Kundenschutz) that would result from this.
With regard to the beer supply to the German canteens, etc., it was decided that the N.M.C. will consult with Mr Engelhard about the distribution via a central point; this distribution will then take place in collaboration with the C.B.K. through the eligible breweries.
Mr. Zylker emphasizes the importance that any complaints about German beer imports are reported to the secretariat so that they can possibly be taken up with Mr. Louwes."
Minutes of the management of the CBK on 3rd April 1941, held at the Amsterdam City Archives, document number 31121-1, page 189.
Though they were still fretting about German beer imports. I'm not really sure why, given that Dutch breweries were unable to meet demand, at least with beer close to pre-war strength. You'd have thought they would have been pleased to have some of the pressure taken off them.
The CBK was hoping to get approval for "heavy" beer to bee 9º Balling and Lagerbier 7% Balling. Which would have left Pilsner at around 3.6% ABV and Lagerbier 2.8% ABV.
"Mr. Stikker says that Mr. Gentzsch will probably agree with a reduction in gravity to +- 7 and 9%, but the Chief Intendent of the Wehrmacht also has yet to comment on this. The German authorities now wish for a new discussion, in which on the part of the C.B.K. the plans in terms of gravity, output level and regulation of the sales restriction must be submitted. These plans will be discussed in advance with the N.A.C. April 4."
Minutes of the management of the CBK on 3rd April 1941, held at the Amsterdam City Archives, document number 31121-1, page 190.
This last comment makes clear who was really in charge: the Wehrmacht.
"Mr. Stikker puts forward that the ultimate decision regarding the reduction of the gravity does not lie with Mr. Louwes, but with the German authorities. It is uncertain whether the German armed forces will accept a low gravity."
Minutes of the management of the CBK on 3rd April 1941, held at the Amsterdam City Archives, document number 31121-1, page 197.
Interested in which breweries were supplying the German army? We'll get to that soon. Let's just say this: some brewers were doing way more than a fair share.