Dominica: Future of hurrican smashed Dominica Brewery uncertain

After being destroyed by hurrican Maria in September 2017 the future of Dominica Brewery & Beverages Limited (DDBL) is still uncertain according to a recent report by Brauwelt. The brewery was established in 1995 and was known for its popular Kubuli beer and the mineral water brand Loubiere. In addition the company produced the brands Guinness and VitaMalt under license. In its heyday, DDBL accounted for more than 21,000 hl of beer and 20,000 hl of mineral water per year.

However, DDBL’s star began to fade after the company was sold several times – first in 2006 together with Antigua Brewery and St. Vincent Brewery to Danish brewer Royal Unibrew, later in 2009 to Cervecería Nacional Dominicana (CND). CND closed in 2011 the brewery in Antigua and transferred production of Wadadli, the Antigua Brewery’s flagship beer, to its St Vincent brewery.

CND in turn was acquired in April 2012 by Anheuser-Busch InBev's Brazilian unit AmBev and merged with AmBev’s Dominican operation, known as Ambev Dominicana thus forming the biggest beverage company in the Caribbean. In December 2017 AmBev increased its stake in CND from 55 percent to 85%. (inside.beer, 5.12.2017)

In September 2017 tropical storm Maria caused catastrophic damage and at least 112 recorded fatalities across the northeastern Caribbean. The death toll is believed to be far higher than the official toll, with estimates of the actual loss of life ranging from 500 to more than 1,000.

Maria wrought catastrophic damage to the entirety of Dominica, which suffered an island-wide communication blackout. Much of the housing stock and infrastructure, including the brewery were left beyond repair, while the island's lush vegetation had been practically eradicated.

When asked about the future of the hurrican smashed brewery officials declined to give a statement.

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