the rum market
1.1 Definition and presentation
Rum is an alcoholic beverage obtained through the fermentation and distillation of its main ingredient: sugar cane. Sugar cane is a tropical plant whose sucrose is used as a raw material in the food and beverage industry. First records of rum date back to the first half of the XVII century in West Indies, when African slaves discovered molasses – an ingredient generated during the process of sugar refinement- could ferment into alcohol. In no time the popularity of the drink reached North America and not long after that it became one of the most profitable industries of New England. Today rum’s most important ingredient – sugar cane – is the world’s largest crop by production quantity.
Rum can be consumed at home or out of home and as a drink or used in the kitchen. There are different typologies of rum, the three macro categories identifiable are:
- White rum
- Dark rum
- Spicy rum
Consumption of rum in Italy is expected to be influenced by a series of changing social, demographic and economic factors, such as aging population or increasing interest towards premiumization. Parallelly, rum expansion faces a number of challenges on the Italian territory, especially deriving from alternative beverages (e.g. famous liquors or grappa) and decreasing alcohol consumption.
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