The building opposite The Edgewater Resort and Spa in Arorangi on the Main Rd is undergoing major renovations to become the new home of Cook Islands Lager. PHOTO: AL WILLIAMS/22121917
Rarotonga Brewery is set to move from its location on the Main Rd opposite Oasis Energy to a new site opposite The Edgewater Resort and Spa in Arorangi as the company looks to more than double its capacity.
Company spokesman Edward Nee Nee said the current
location had served them well over the past seven years, but it was time to
move on as the lease had expired, and they were planning to increase capacity
from 4000 to 10,000 litres.
That would involve installation of new tanks at the
Arorangi facility, which was undergoing a refit.
Nee Nee said the development had been in the pipeline
for some time as Covid-19 had put the brakes on progress.
The company plans to brew cider at its new plant with
locally sourced fruits, plus hazy ale.
A number of former Matutu Brewing tanks would assist
with the increased capacity, he said.
The operation employs eight staff who will all move to
the new site, sometime in the New Year, pending progress.
“It’s like starting from scratch; we are in the new
norm playing catch-up football following Covid-19.”
That involves juggling logistical issues including the
increasing cost of carbon dioxide (chemical formula CO2), grain and transport, Nee
“We are also looking forward to expanding our
environmental innovations; our keeper bottle programme is 12 months old.
“For the first eight months the bottles never came
back, but at the moment we have an 80 per cent return rate.
“We don’t want to see them going into landfill.”
Nee Nee said the move was a huge investment for the
“We were ready to do this prior to Covid.
“We look forward to what we have to deliver now, and
we also thank our loyal customers for supporting us during tough times.”
Rarotonga Brewery celebrated
a major milestone in the company’s history in 2019. By choosing not to bottle
their popular Cook Islands Lager, the company helped to stop over one million
glass bottles from entering the landfill.
The aim was to reduce the amount of waste going into
For every two-litre flagon refill, six bottles are
saved from entering the landfill.
Every four-litre refill saves twelve bottles, and
every 50-litre keg saves 150 bottles from entering the landfill.