Nestlé – Retro Birds of the Caribbean

All hands up…if you remember

Thirty odd years ago, Nestle created a charming
promotion targeting young bird enthusiasts in Trinidad and Tobago. What was annoying was how difficult it was to remove the label, it seemed much stronger than Elmer’s contact cement. There was the likelihood that the precious colour illustrations such as the Scarlet Ibis, one of the National birds of the Republic would tear if you were not too careful trying to peel it off. Just removing it was the hassle, and some enthusiasts resorted to damping or steaming the label, praying that it would gently lift from the tin. At the end of this long process, the objective was to get the entire collection of birds that ranged from the Blue Gray Tanager to the Blue Crowned Motmot and to stick them into the accompanying book that gave further details of each specimen.

The book to be filled with pictures of birds from Nestlé Condense Milk labels There was also the randomness of finding the same bird under the tin’s label and this would encourage you to sweeten your Milo a bit more to use up the Nestlé to fill your book. Parents everywhere were encouraged, or moreso, coerced into buying tins upon tins of Nestle, so that their children could finish their books…a precersor to the Pokemon craze of the last century. In the same way, children would trade or barter with other friends all in the hope to fill the book with the complete collection which today artists use as a reference to the vast bird life that populates these Caribbean islands. – thebookmann

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