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Beer backtrack after outrage

Samoans have one less reason to froth as the iconic beer Vailima will return home and continue to be produced in Samoa.

Following an evaluation that it was too costly to continue production of the beer in Samoa, production was moved to Fiji.

This created outrage among Samoans who felt the essence of the beer was lost because it was being taken away from the country.

Samoa Breweries Ltd announced that a Memorandum of Understanding has been reached with shareholders Charlie Va’ai and Beatrice Ott to produce Vailima in Samoa for local consumption.

Samoans have one less reason to froth as the iconic beer Vailima will return home and continue to be produced in Samoa. Picture: Vailima Official Twitter

“It’s always been our strong preference to keep the production of Vailima in Samoa,” said Paradise Beverages Limited general manager Mike Spencer.

“We are thrilled to be working on a solution where the brewing of the iconic Vailima brand would remain in Samoa and be looked after by people who are incredibly passionate about the brand.”

SBL said until Mr Va’ai and Ms Ott are ready to produce locally on island, the product will be produced offshore using the same methods and ingredients to ensure consumers can in the meantime continue to enjoy their much-loved Vailima.

The MOU foresees that SBL will grant Mr Va’ai, Ms Ott and family an exclusive license to produce the Vailima brand in Samoa for the local Samoan market.

Samoa Breweries Limited will continue to sell and distribute Vailima alongside Samoa’s favourite non-alcoholic beverages while the brewing of Vailima will be done locally by Mr Va’ai and Ms Ott.

Vailima has been a Samoan icon. Picture: Vailima Official Twitter

Moira Simi, Country Manager of Samoa Breweries Limited said “It’s fantastic we have found a passionate local to produce our much-loved Vailima. We look forward to working closely with Mr Va’ai and Ms Ott to continue the great legacy of Vailima in Samoa.”

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The Government of Samoa was also informed on the latest developments through the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Labour.

“We had a successful meeting with the Ministry of Commerce Industry and Labour, as well as the Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mata’afa this week to provide an update on the MOU and plans to produce Vailima in Samoa,” said Ms Simi.

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