JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, was on hand yesterday (September 7) to see Red Stripe sending off its first shipment to the United States from Jamaica in four years.
  • At a ceremony at Red Stripe’s Spanish Town Road location, Mr. Holness hailed the move by the iconic Jamaican brand to re-establish Jamaica as its global production hub.
  • Describing the repatriation move as a good business decision, the Prime Minister said the Government appreciates the company’s improvements in efficiencies through the upgrade of its plant as well as increases in its workforce.

Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, was on hand yesterday (September 7) to see Red Stripe sending off its first shipment to the United States from Jamaica in four years.

At a ceremony at Red Stripe’s Spanish Town Road location, Mr. Holness hailed the move by the iconic Jamaican brand to re-establish Jamaica as its global production hub.

He said this is a reflection of the company’s commitment to protect the authenticity of the brand by having it produced locally as well as of the confidence in the country’s improving macroeconomic environment.

Describing the repatriation move as a good business decision, the Prime Minister said the Government appreciates the company’s improvements in efficiencies through the upgrade of its plant as well as increases in its workforce.

“That is a big thing and the Government of Jamaica expresses its gratitude for that investment decision. It is that decision that has made it possible for your output to increase, employment to increase and, indeed, the growth of the company, which will translate into the growth of the Jamaican economy,” he said.

With the reinstatement of exports to the United States, Red Stripe has hired an additional 50 employees and will take on another 30 by the end of the month. The company has also invested some $6 billion in plant upgrades, including modernisation of its brewery, installation of a combined heat and power plant and the overhaul of its packaging line.

Mr. Holness said he is particularly happy about Red Stripe’s decision to substitute the import of a critical ingredient for the beer with cassava.

The company will move its cassava production to 1,000 acres, which is expected to indirectly employ 900 persons.

“You can see the connection between good government policy inspiring business executives to take a risk and how that can pay off in the expansion of production and growing the economy, creating prosperity for all,” the Prime Minister said.

Meanwhile, Managing Director of Red Stripe, Ricardo Nuncio, said the move will also serve to create other industries and spinoffs, as it will lead to a busier port, increased services in the logistics industry and employment in other sectors.

“I want to thank the Prime Minister and the Government of Jamaica for supporting us and making this day a reality. I also want to confirm and reinforce our commitment that you have, with Red Stripe, a solid partner,” Mr. Nuncio said.

United States Ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency, Luis Moreno, in remarks, noted that the development is significant given the role Red Stripe plays in the Jamaica-United States relationship.

The Ambassador said he envisions that there will also be benefit to his country’s economy, due to the increased need for distributors and retail workers to supply the brand to American consumers.

Red Stripe, a part of the Heinekin company, moved its export operations to the United States in 2012, as part of a broader cost-reduction strategy.