DB proposal means all Monteith’s brewing headed to Timaru and Auckland

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DB has again signalled its intention to stop brewing Monteith's in Greymouth, shifting production to Timaru and Auckland.

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DB has again signalled its intention to stop brewing Monteith’s in Greymouth, shifting production to Timaru and Auckland.

Greymouth’s loss could be Timaru’s gain as DB proposes to change its Monteith’s beer brewing operations.

A spokesperson for the company confirmed on Wednesday that it is proposing to move commercial production from its Monteith’s brewery in Greymouth to its other breweries in Timaru and Auckland.

It is not the first time DB has attempted to end Monteith’s brewing in Greymouth where the brewery dates back to 1868 with the beer brand founded on the West Coast.

In 2001, DB’s closure attempt copped a public backlash across New Zealand and a boycott of the company’s products that resulted in it back-tracking on the decision several days later and reopening the brewery in a much smaller format with production shared across Greymouth, Auckland and Timaru.

DB's Monteith's Brewery in Greymouth in 2006.

ROSS SETFORD/NZPA

DB’s Monteith’s Brewery in Greymouth in 2006.

“Monteith’s is a significant brand in New Zealand and has been brewed at various DB sites around the country for many years now, with a relatively small volume being produced in Greymouth,’’ the company spokesperson said on Wednesday.

When asked how many positions would be affected in the Greymouth change and whether it could result in more staff in Timaru, the spokesperson reiterated “the move is only a proposal, so we do not know the final number of impacted people, but we have worked hard to minimise the number of roles affected”.

The Greymouth Star, however, reported on Wednesday that seven jobs will be lost in Greymouth.

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The Monteith’s gastropub and brewery experience will remain in operation, according to the spokesperson.

The Monteith's Brewery in Greymouth in 2006.

ROSS SETFORD/NZPA

The Monteith’s Brewery in Greymouth in 2006.

“This proposal has been made in light of the impact of Covid-19 and a wider need for DB to streamline its operations in the context of ongoing uncertainty,” she said.

“The complexity of moving raw materials to Greymouth, and then transporting finished product out is no longer commercially viable, from both a cost and carbon emissions point of view, given the small volumes.

DB managing director Brian Blake, West Coast MP Damien O'Connor and Grey District Mayor Kevin Brown celebrate in 2001 the brewery's decision back track on a plan to end production of Monteith's in Greymouth.

Dave Hansford/Stuff

DB managing director Brian Blake, West Coast MP Damien O’Connor and Grey District Mayor Kevin Brown celebrate in 2001 the brewery’s decision back track on a plan to end production of Monteith’s in Greymouth.



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