Tusker Bottle Replaced with Cascade Bottle

Lord Mayor Eric Festa (2nd from left), VBL CEO Herve Michel (1st from left) and staff from the Port Vila City Council and VBL, standing with the new Cascade bottle

The Tusker bottle in Port Vila Town that was removed following complaints made by the Vanuatu Christian Council (VCC) and the Ministers Fraternity has been replaced with a Cascade bottle made by the same company — Vanuatu Brewery Limited (VBL).

Port Vila Lord Mayor Eric Festa says to make everyone happy, he agreed to a bottle of VBL’s non-alcoholic drink to be put up.

Mayor Festa commended VBL for managing not to lay off staff during the COVID-19 crisis.

He says the company supports the community and the government collects a lot of revenue in taxes from their products when they are sold. VBL also paid the PVCC to have the bottle re-erected.

Though Mayor Festa respects the churches and the VCC, he says they should concentrate on their duties and let the City Council do theirs. He adds as a fisherman by trade he has the Lord in his heart as fishermen are mentioned a lot in the Bible.

Festa says VBL provides employment to a lot of people so they can feed their family. He mentions the company also helps those who collect empty Tusker and Cascade bottles by giving them money when they return those empty bottles to the factory.

In response to those who said the statue of the old tusker bottle encouraging drunkenness, Mayor Festa says, the choice one makes to drink comes from the heart and not a non-living monument. Festa who does not drink alcohol says he does not drink due to how he feels not by external influences.

Festa says Vanuatu is 40 and if anyone drinks and walks around drunk on the road shouting or driving while drunk, he or she is immature. Festa says common sense of drinking at home is what is needed.

Festa says alcohol will always be around and it is up to parents to educate their children on responsibility and choices. He points out that MPs, Ministers, Chiefs and even some Pastors drink alcoholic beverages.

VBL CEO, Herve Michel says the original Tusker bottle was put up to commemorate the beverage’s 30th anniversary which coincided with Vanuatu’s 40{sup}th{/sup}anniversary.

Michel says the bottle was put up under a contract with the City Council to showcase the advancement of Vanuatu’s production industry.

In relation to the prices of VBL drinks, Michel says the prices will not increase despite the COVID-19 crisis as he retained all his staff and there are no major challenges in production.

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