As the Crop Over festival winds down, with major events taking place this weekend, the leading beer producing company in Barbados has joined Minister of Health John Boyce in urging Barbadians to limit their consumption of alcohol as they party and enjoy the festivities, to prevent any immediate or long-term side effects.
Managing Director of Banks Holdings Limited (BHL) Group Richard Cozier and Boyce made the call after touring the company’s Newton, Christ Church state-of-the-art plant.
With Crop Over being deemed the season of the second largest alcohol consumption in Barbados – Christmas taking first position – Boyce, who was formerly employed at Banks as chief engineer, said his ministry held a unique interest in what happens at Banks Breweries since the misuse of alcohol is one of the risk factors leading to non-communicable diseases.
He stressed that his ministry supported the use of alcohol in moderation as promoted by the Pan American Health Organization.
Boyce also pointed out that Banks has joined with other local alcohol producers to make representation to the ministry and they have indicated their willingness to work with the ministry on encouraging people not to abuse alcohol.
“This is a season of revelry and we are going to have a good time [Foreday Morning] and we are going to have a good time Monday morning [Kadooment Day], but we are asking Barbadians to just do it in moderation and please let us have no casualties because of it, and let us have no down the road health issues as a result of what we term binge drinking,” Boyce said.
Cozier echoed the minister’s sentiments in reminding alcohol consumers to drink responsibly, a message that he said the company carried in all its marketing initiatives.
“We want our consumers to enjoy Banks Beer for a long life span. We do not want consumers who enjoy Banks Beer after one season and then you hear that they have had a misfortune in some form of a non-communicable disease or an accident or whatever. We need all consumers to be healthy for a long period of time,” he said.
“We have workers in our plant who would have been with us since the 1960s and they are testament to the responsible use of alcohol. All of our workers live long and healthy lives . . .,” Cozier said.
Cozier noted that Banks, the official beer of the festival, has been associated with Crop Over from its inception and it intended to keep that partnership going for as long as possible.