Production of Vailima Could Remain in Samoa

Photo: The friendly team at Taumeasina Hideaway, Moataa.

24 August 2022 Apia Samoa. Samoa Breweries Ltd (SBL) have announced a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has been reached with business entrepreneurs and couple Charlie Va’ai and Beatrice Ott to take over the production of Vailima in Samoa.

“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,” states the release.

According to the statement, Samoa Breweries Limited will continue to sell and distribute Vailima and its soft drinks line of beverages, while the brewing of Vailima will be done locally by Mr Va’ai and Ms Ott.

“It’s always been our strong preference to keep the production of Vailima in Samoa,” says Paradise Beverages Limited General Manager Mike Spencer. Paradise Beverages is the majority shareholder of SBL.

“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,” he added.

However the MOU is a preliminary step. Vailima and its products will continue to be produced off-island “until Mr Va’ai and Ms Ott are ready to produce locally on island”.

According to the statement, Vailima will in the meantime be produced offshore using the same methods and ingredients.

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.”

The Government has also been 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 Hon. Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mata’afa this week to provide an update on the MOU and plans to produce Vailima in Samoa,” said Simi.

It was not confirmed when Vaai and Ott would be ready to begin local production, however, “more information will be shared once the details of the collaboration are finalised”.