The Resurgence of American Rum
The resurgence of American rum stared when Craft Distilleries became popular like Craft Breweries and Boutique Wineries. Consumer demand for higher quality, locally produced spirits prompted RAILEAN to establish the first rum distillery in Texas. Within a couple of years, RAILEAN became the first American Rum to become certified "Made in USA" in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission regulations.
Events leading up to the American Rum Revolution™
2012 – RAILEAN® re-brands as Handcrafted American Rum™
2012 – RAILEAN® launches the first Handcrafted American Spiced Rum™
2011 – RAILEAN® becomes first rum to be Made in USA Certified®
2011 – Demand for products Made in USA increase due to poor quality of imports
2009 – RAILEAN® launches first American made “Single Barrel” Rum
2008 – RAILEAN® launches first aged spirit produced in Texas
2008 – Hurricane Ike rips through RAILEAN® Distillery and shuts down production
2008 – Puerto Rican and Virgin Island Rum industry receive $192 million government bailout
2008 – Foreign held Diageo receives 2.8 Billion in tax subsidies from US Government
2007 – RAILEAN® launches the First Texas Rum™
2007 – Craft distilleries become popular like Craft Breweries and Boutique Wineries
2005 – RAILEAN® establishes first and only distillery in Houston/Galveston Texas
Import Subsidies & Prohibition Destroy the American Rum Industry
Imported rum from Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands received federal tax subsidies and rum production in the United States slowly decreased. Prohibition was instituted with ratification of the Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution in 1920 and as a result the last New England Rum distilleries closed. The 21st amendment repeals prohibition of alcohol in 1930 but the subsidies on imports continues and therefore the American rum industry never recovers.
1954 – United States extends federal excise tax exemption to the US Virgin Islands
1933 – Repeal of Prohibition Twenty First Amendment to the US Constitution
1919 – Prohibition Eighteen Amendment to the US Constitution
1917 – Puerto Rican rum producers become exempt from federal excise tax
Rum is the Original Spirit of America™
Rum was the official drink of the New England Colonies. The French's ban on the manufacture of rum to protect their domestic brandy industry provided a cheap source of molasses to the American Colonies. Over sixty distilleries sprang up providing 80% of all exports from the colonies.
The British first imposed a tax on French molasses and subsequently on sugar (taxation without representation) and tea which led to the Boston Tea Party and the American Revolution. Rum was the preferred drink of American Soldiers during the Revolutionary War and is still considered America's Original Spirit.
1791 – Rum taxes force Americans to produce grain spirits
1776 – Rum is the preferred drink of American Soldiers during Revolutionary War
1773 – Tax on Rum and Molasses (Rum) lead to Boston Tea Party and American Revolution
1764 – Sugar Act – beginning of “taxation without representation”
1750 – Sixty Rum Distilleries in operation equating to 80% of all exports from colonies
1733 – Molasses Act – tax on imported molasses from French Colonies or Plantations
1700 – Molasses imported by New England Distillers from French sugar Islands
1690 – The French ban manufacture of rum to protect their domestic brandy industry
1675 – Rum is official drink of New England Colonies
Caribbean Islands, Sailors and Pirates
The first distillation of fermented sugarcane molasses and thus the first rum spirit produced took place on the sugarcane plantations of the Caribbean in the 1600's. Plantation slaves first discovered that molasses, a by-product of the sugar refining process, can be fermented into alcohol or Rum (English), Rhum (French), Ron (Spanish).
The association of rum with the Royal Navy began in 1655 when the British fleet captured the island of Jamaica. With the availability of domestically produced rum, the British changed the daily ration of liquor given to seamen from French brandy to rum. Rum's association with piracy began when British privateers became pirates and buccaneers.
Discovery of Sugarcane
The discovery of sugarcane can be traced back to antiquity, however, the actual fermentation of sugarcane juice is believed to have first occurred either in ancient India or China around 1500 A.D.
1600's – First distillation of Sugarcane into Rum
1700's – 60+ Rum Distilleries in the England Colonies