A leading local manufacturing exporter has raised its product integrity on the international market.
Banks (Barbados) Breweries Limited today announced it had been awarded the ISO certification for quality and safety standards. The ISO –– the International Organization for Standardization –– is responsible for setting management standards around the world.
Banks Breweries, already known for its award-winning beer, said the certification puts it in a position to compete on the world market and make its products more attractive.
At the end of a tour of the brewery at Newton, Christ Church, chief commercial officer Ray Chee-A-Tow told reporters the company was now examining the possibility of penetrating the Russian and German markets, having already entered the United States, Canadian, British, Swiss, Swedish and Norwegan markets.
Chee-A-Tow, who was sharing the tour with EU Ambassador to Barbados Mikael Barfod and other officials on both sides, said the importance of proper packaging and labelling continued to be magnified whenever its representatives went looking for new markets.
“We go out every year looking for new business, and at the end of the day you meet new people . . . and the first question . . . ‘Where you from?’. You say Barbados . . . ‘Barbados, how could they make beer?!’. So it is very important that we can have, not only the quality beer, not only certifications, but we actually have packaging.”
He revealed that the company’s new product it introduced to the United States market late last year had continued to grow and because of its repackaging and new look drinks, Banks Breweries had become stronger and stronger. The benefits of relocating the plant from Wildey to ultramodern, multipurpose, cutting-edge facilities at Newton, were also brought into sharp focus.
Brewery manager Akash Ragbir noted that the company was now using 50 per cent less water and about 30 percent less electricity.
Ragbir said, too, that eight per cent of all its power came from the utilization of the photovoltaic system.
EU Ambassador Barfod was full of praise for the cleanliness of the facilities, which he toured today. In fact, he informed the tour party he was taken aback by the high standard of the operations. He said he was interested in successful companies, like Banks, taking advantage of the provisions under the European Partnership Agreement with Barbados and the rest of the Caribbean.
The ambassador stated that with small amounts of financial assistance already given to Banks for things such as labelling, he would like to see more private businesses take up the benefits of the EPA.
Barfod was also optimistic that the provisions, though accessed slowly, would be successful.
Banks Breweries, which produces about 11,000 cases per day, has been supplying home porting cruise vessels, associated with the Carnival UK group, with keg-beer over the past six years.