Red Stripe leads peer share for local manufacturers
With global markets developing greater appetites for Jamaican products, local manufacturers are keen on improving capabilities to meet international market demands and take advantage of increasing opportunities. As part of its continuing drive to support local exporters, the Jamaica Manufacturers’ and Exporters’ Association (JMEA) recently partnered with Red Stripe, one of the country’s largest exporters, to host a forum where new and potential exporters could benefit from the beer company’s experience.
“Export is a key driver in our success at Red Stripe and we understand that successfully navigating the processes, both here and in other markets, requires know-how,” said Ricardo Nuncio, Red Stripe’s managing director. “This peer share is, therefore, a really good way to engage those with less experience and empower them with the information they need.”
Range of topics
The session, held as part of the observance of National Exporters Month, covered a range of areas, beginning with how to evaluate potential opportunities in external markets; creating a product that not only meets demand, but also satisfies quality and other standards; and marketing. Nuncio led a team of subject matter experts who also shared details on topics like how to get a product ready for distribution and sale in a foreign market, understanding global trade, and protecting copyright.
Stephen Dawkins, vice-president of the Export and Logistics Committee at the JMEA, commented on the importance of hosting the peer share for manufacturers. “The greater focus we place on this, is the greater profit we can reap as a country. This peer share hosted by Red Stripe was the perfect opportunity to assist in getting small exporters ready or improve what they have already started, as well as maximising benefits from global trade. Red Stripe has a proven credibility and profitability in export, therefore, [the firm] was able to bring to light the value of export, especially to the smaller companies that have not begun exporting.”
In the past year, Red Stripe exported two million cases of the product to more than 20 countries. The company’s managing director said that it took years of experience, and even some trial and error, to get the brewery to this stage as a leader in exports. Nuncio said that by sharing Red Stripe’s wins and setbacks, and hearing of other exporters’ experiences, the beer company could only grow.
“We shouldn’t hold information to ourselves. Growing in the export business can only help everyone. The basket is very big, so there is an opportunity for all of us. It is our aim to be a strong exporter, as this is just another way in which we are brewing a better Jamaica, each case of Red Stripe exported brings us closer to that vision.”