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Why rum-based spirits are must-stocks this festive season

By Samantha Newby, Category Director, Captain Morgan

- Last updated on GMT

Captain's orders: customers will be looking for serves they can't recreate at home
Captain's orders: customers will be looking for serves they can't recreate at home

Related tags: Branding + marketing, Spirits, Finance, Cocktails

Many consumers will have missed spending time with friends and family within the on-trade over the past year and we can expect people to flock back to pubs and bars this festive season to enjoy celebrating with loved ones.

This time of year provides a fantastic opportunity for operators to re-engage with consumers, offering unique and high-quality spirits and drinks options. For discerning consumers planning to celebrate in venues this year, we can expect they will be looking to enjoy serves they can’t necessarily create themselves at home.

Rum and rum-based spirits are at the heart of creating memorable moments for consumers – an ‘all-year-round’ category that can be used as a base for a range of iconic cocktail and simple serves. Research has shown that, on average, consumers of the rum-based spirit category spend £23.60 per head per occasion – more than any other spirits consumer[1]​. We also know 64% of rum and rum-based spirit consumers are likely to revisit a venue if they had a good experience[2]​. With planning for the festive season at the forefront of operators’ minds, we recommend considering how to incorporate a selection of these spirits into an offering, to help increase spend per head – especially as people look to make occasions special this winter. Leveraging the category will be important, as rum-based spirit drinkers seem to be loyal customers, willing to spend in-venue multiple times if served a drink they have enjoyed.

Twists on classics

While there are many different types of rum and rum-based spirits available currently, it’s worth carefully considering which types to stock. Alongside a classic staple of white rum, we suggest maintaining a selection of spiced and flavoured variants to encourage exploration from consumers and to help operators offer twists on classics. Spiced and flavoured rums and rum-based spirit drinks are driving the rum-based spirit growth within the category[3]​, indicating consumers are interested in trying bold, unique flavour profiles. For publicans wanting to drive sales through the category, stocking Captain Morgan Original Spiced Gold Spirit Drink is key, as not only is it a trusted and well-known brand, but it is also currently the no.1 driver of flavoured rum growth[4]​.

While Captain Morgan Original Spiced Gold and cola is one of the most popular serves within the on-trade[5]​, operators can encourage spirit drinkers to increase spend by offering Captain Morgan Spiced Gold-based cocktails. Easily used as the base of many delicious serves, such as a Captain Morgan Spiced Strawberry Daiquiri (pictured above right), the spirit can be used in high-quality drinks that bar staff can easily create. During the festive season, we also recommend offering a Captain Hot Toddy serve. Simply add 40ml of Captain Morgan Original Spiced Gold, 30ml of lemon juice and a tablespoon of honey to a festive mug and garnish with a cinnamon stick to provide exciting seasonal serves to consumers.

Encourage range exploration

Publicans can also leverage Captain Morgan Original Spiced Gold to promote the entire Captain Morgan portfolio. We know 39.7% of consumers expect to be served Captain Morgan Original Spiced Gold when in a pub, bar or restaurant if they’ve asked for a rum or a rum-based spirit without specifying a brand[6]​. There is a golden opportunity for operators to leverage the brand’s recognition to encourage exploration of the rest of the Captain Morgan range. For example, Captain Morgan Tiki was the no.1 flavoured rum-based spirit drink innovation[7]​ following its launch, which is testament to its great taste and quality. Served simply with lemonade or within cocktails, there are numerous ways to use Captain Morgan Tiki to provide premium-quality drinks options for those consumers looking to create memorable moments this festive season.

To promote a rum-based spirit offering, publicans may want to take advantage of the striking Captain Morgan bottle designs and display them prominently on the back bar, as well as considering the addition of eye-catching PoS materials. Social media is also a very influential platform that operators would benefit from using. Promoting a range across social media will be key for publicans when showcasing their rum-based spirit offering and range of serves in the run-up to the festive period and throughout this time.

For more information and advice on how to bolster your Captain Morgan range head to​ and also visit​.

[1]​ CGA BRANDTRACK AUGUST 2020 – This sub-category, as defined by Nielsen & CGA, is constituted of rum-based spirits drinks

[2]​ CGA BRANDTRACK AUGUST 2020 – This sub-category, as defined by Nielsen & CGA, is constituted of rum-based spirits drinks

[3]​ CGA OPMS MAT to 22.02.2020 & H1 2021. Spiced Rum +21.2%, Flavoured Rum +37.8% - this sub-category, as defined by Nielsen & CGA, is constituted of Rum based Spirit Drinks

[4]​ CGA OPMS MAT P13 2020 - This sub-category, as defined by Nielsen & CGA, is constituted of rum-based spirit drinks

[5]​ CGA Mixed Drinks Report Q1 2020

[6]​ Kantar Worldpanel Sept 2021

[7]​ CGA OPMS MAT P13 2020

Related topics: Spirits & Cocktails

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