Page theme: Jamaica, rum,ron,rhum,aguardiente,tafia,cachaça,rum distillery,rum drink,rum label collection,liquor,spirit

Jamaica

Here is list of companies whose rum bottle labels I have in my collection:

Robert Allen, Wolverhampton (1)
James Andrew & Co, Kingston (1)
Don The Beachcomber (1)
Bonded Warehouses (2)
J. Booker Rum Merchants Ltd (1)
Geo. Eustace Burke & Bros. Ltd. (3)
Edwin Charley (Jamaica) Ltd. (6)
Edward Clark & Co. Ltd., Kingston (1)
Cloverman & Co (1)
Edwards & Co, Kingston (2)
Estate Industries Limited (1)
Daniel Finzi & Co. (Suc.) Ltd. (4)
Goodridge and Wood, Kingston (1)
Hampden Sugar Estate (1)
Henry & Co, St. Elisabeth (1)
Grange Hill Products Co., Kingston (6)
Imperial Spirits Ltd, Kingston (2)
Karbyl & Sons (1)
J. E. Kerr & Co. LTD. (0)
A. Kinckerbrocker (1)
Lascellos Wines & Spirits (1)
K.R.B. Lea & Co. (1)
Long Pond Distillery (4)
J. Maretta (1)
Fr. Marino (4)
Monymusk Distillery (0)
The Morant Liquor Company (2)
Captain Morgan Rum Distillers (Jamaica) Ltd. (3)
Fred L. Myers & Son Ltd. (6)
National Rums of Jamaica Limited (0)
Other (3)
W.O. Patrick & Co, Kingston (1)
Rum Company (Jamaica) Ltd. (27)
Dr. Ian Sangster & Co. Ltd. (7)
Habitation St. Louis (2)
Sugar Mills Limited, Kingston (6)
The Caribbean Rum Shippers Ltd, Kingston (6)
TTL Rum Bottlers Ltd, Kingston (2)
Worthy Park Estate, Ewarton (4)
J. Wray & Nephew Ltd. (41)

In 1893, the total area of Jamaica under sugar cane production was 31,555 acres. About 88% of this belonged to sugar estates which operated their own mills and distilleries. In total, there were 148 distilleries throughout the island. Since then there has been a dramatic reduction in the number of estates and distilleries although the quantity of rum produced has grown.

Some Early Production Figures from Distilleries in Jamaican Parishes
Parish 1893 1901 1912 1922 1936 1948
  Dist. Gallons Dist. Gallons Dist. Gallons Dist. Gallons Dist. Gallons Dist. Gallons
St Andrew 1 10500 1 7392 - - - - - - - -
St Thomas 10 102648 4 56868 2 41496 4 109526 2 65750 2 295953
St Mary 4 35280 - - - - - - 1 31240 1 EtOH only
St Ann 8 76839 3 57372 2 32844 3 6270 2 39369 2 52327
Trelawny 26 245574 24 215948 18 129234 9 204242 4 85330 3 165678
St James 25 154308 20 90216 8 57540 7 86886 4 64982 4 168558
Hanover 16 105672 15 99540 7 60312 2 63570 1 15225 1 31447
Westmoreland 23 363972 21 356496 15 304164 8 285588 7 225264 1 449264
St Elizabeth 6 48720 4 35028 2 43848 3 54618 2 71148 2 186794
Clarendon 17 253008 13 288120 9 168420 7 258937 3 174488 4 801032
St Catherine 12 219744 5 75684 3 33600 5 303042 3 183869 5 813293
Manchester - - - - 1 5040 - - - - - -
Totals 148 1616265 110 1282664 67 876498 48 1372679 29 956665 25 2964346

The Jamaican Excise Duty Law, No 73 of 1941 defined rum as "spirits distilled solely from sugar cane juice, sugar cane molasses, or the refuse of the sugar cane, at a strength not exceeding 150% proof spirit".


"Think of high-ester rum as a concentrate," Main Rum Company’s Ben Cross told me. He went on to explain that it was created at the Vale Royal Distillery in the early twentieth century by Jamaica's government chemist, Dr. H. Cousins, as a way of maintaining Jamaica's rum trade with Germany. The German government had slapped an ad valorem tax on rum in order to protect its domestic spirits industry. Dr. Cousins' solution was to produce an ultraconcentrated rum which, when added in small quantities to German-made neutral spirit, resulted in a rum-flavored drink known as Rumverschnitt.

The process starts with an ultra-long ferment, which can be anything between five days and two weeks long. Stretching a ferment in this way will result in an acidic wash containing around 500 esters.

[Source: Dave Broom, Jason Lowe: Rum, 2003, p. 44]

The industry developed under British influence along with Barbados. An author, AC Barnes, writing in Sugar Cane in 1964 about 19 century distillation methods said "The whole process was in the charge of a distiller upon whose experience and skill, entirely unaided by any scientific knowledge or chemical control, the success of the distillery depended. He tolerated no interference, was highly suspicious of any attempted innovation, and jealously guarded the secrets of his mysterious procedures, only imparting any of his knowledge to an apprentice selected by him who paid a substantial fee to be allowed to learn something of the intricacies of distillery operation. When fermentation was sluggish, a dead animal, a large piece of meat or some other fancied corrective would be pitched into the offending vat."

The best Jamaica distillers had, by the end of the 19th century, taken over from the Barbadians as the top rum producers. In fact, by then, sugar making in Jamaica had become a by-product of rum production rather than the other way around, as was typical. In 1945, Seagram's of Canada founded Captain Morgan Rum Distillers. They began as blenders, but eventually bought the Long Pond sugar estate and rum distillery.


The Spirits Pool Association Ltd. was established in 1932 to promote the interests of Jamaican Rums. The association is owned by all the distilleries. These include Appleton, nestled in the Nassau valley in St. Elizabeth and New Yarmouth in the plains of Clarendon. Both these distilleries are owned and operated by Wray & Nephew.

Long Pond in Trelawny and Clarendon Distillers on the Vere Plains are owned and operated by the Government of Jamaica through National Rums. Hampden, the most traditional of all the distilleries is also located in Trelawny and can produce rums of over 2500 esters.

Jamaica has produced traditional rums in Pot Stills since the 17th century. We also use the new Light Column Stills, the most modern type of rum still.

Jamaica produces the widest varieties of rum in the world, from the very light low ester rums, to the heavy, traditional continental-flavoured rums. Jamaica has the capacity to produce up to 50 million litres of rum annually.



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