UK rum market is now third largest in the world

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

Sales of rum in the on trade see 1.7% growth: UK rum market now third largest in the world (Credit: Getty/andresr)
Sales of rum in the on trade see 1.7% growth: UK rum market now third largest in the world (Credit: Getty/andresr)

Related tags Rum Spirits Cocktails

The UK rum market saw gains of 1.7% in the on trade to January 2022 when compared with 2019 and has become the third largest rum market in the world, according to a recent report by the Campari Group UK.

In particular, premium, and spiced rum have enjoyed an increase in value sales with the category now sitting at the heart of a ‘growing’ cocktail trend.

Campari Group UK managing director Brad Madigan said: “Our Rum Report shows just how much of an opportunity we see rum being for the UK market in 2022 and the years ahead.

“The category is elevating itself far beyond what has previously been perceived as a rum-and-coke-dominated category, to one with endless opportunities within high-end cocktails and beyond.”

Accelerated interest 

According to the Campari report, which included data from Nielsen and CGA, a desire for premiumisation has been key in the categories success with premium rum having seen an 18% increase in value sales in the off trade in 2021 compared to a decline of 1.7% in the standard rum category, a trend which has carried into the on trade.

Within the on trade, premium rum’s share of the category grew by 6.1% in 2019 with more than two thirds of UK consumers, a third of which regularly drank rum, having noted they would spend more money on a quality drink. 

This comes after IWSR Drinks Market Analysis forecasted the UK to have the highest compound annual growth rate to 2021 out of the top 10 rum markets globally, with a growth of 4.8%, taking the total value of the category to £1.17bn

Additionally, 70% of consumers agreed if a rum had an age statement, they would have been more likely to view it as a high-quality spirit, meaning aged rums could encourage consumers of malt whisky and other aged dark spirits to explore the rum category, building on their existing appreciation for the complex flavours aged spirits can offer.

Also highlighted in the report, was the accelerated interest in spiced rum with the variant having been a key growth driver of total rum in the UK over the past two years as flavoured and spiced rum achieved a 6.3% share of the spirits category within the on trade in 2021, an increase of 1.2% on 2019, with this predicted to continue in 2022.

Furthermore, 94% of consumers stated they were open to improving their knowledge and understanding of the category as awareness of diversity and richness of rum increases.

Exciting time

Rum’s versatility has also allowed the spirit to take full advantage of the growing cocktail movement being seen across the UK with rum featuring in five out of the top 20 cocktails across the on trade.

The report also highlighted how the most popular rum serves (Mojito, Daiquiri and Rum Punch) could be tailored depending on the venue they’re being served in or by the skill of the consumer or bartender making the drink, as referenced in the report by Campari Group UK’s rum and whiskies ambassador, Chris Dennis.

Madigan added: “Rising consumer interest and discovery of rum aided through the rise of premium rums such as Appleton Estate, as well as the category’s growing role within the cocktail trend led by brands such as Wray & Nephew, means it’s a really exciting time to hero the rum category in the UK.

“We have a tremendous opportunity to continue to premiumise rum in this market and educate consumers on the vast potential of this fantastic category.”

Related topics Spirits & Cocktails

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