Plantation Rum reveals new name

Maison Ferrand has ditched the Plantation Rum name due to its links to slavery, in a move that was first announced in 2020.

In June 2020, Maison Ferrand revealed its plan to rename Plantation Rum to support racial equality, following the death of George Floyd.

The Barbados-based brand will now be known as ‘Planteray’ in homage to the sugarcane plant and the sun rays that help sugarcane to grow and ripen.

Maison Ferrand said it wanted to ‘evolve’ the brand’s name due to the ‘potentially negative connotations’ of the word ‘plantation’, which has links to slavery.

Founder Alexandre Gabriel, who grew up on a farm, originally named the brand ‘Plantation’ due to its meaning – a large farm.

The company had initially expected the rebrand to take more than two years, but trademarking the name in multiple markets caused a delay.

“From today forward, the evolution from Plantation to Planteray begins,” said Gabriel. “It was a long journey of trademarking a name that reflects our brand ethos in 120 countries.”

He emphasised that the rum continues to be produced in “exactly the same way” as it has been for more than 25 years.

Bottles with the Planteray Rum name will roll out globally from this month.

Cut & Dry launch

The new name was unveiled at the same time as the international launch of Planteray Cut & Dry Coconut Rum, a 100% Barbadian rum infused with locally sourced coconut.

The 40% ABV rum has been made available for the first time outside of the Caribbean.

The expression, created at the West Indies Rum Distillery (WIRD), was the result of four years of experimentation and was picked from 97 recipes.

Gabriel also said it took an additional two years to secure enough coconuts to take the product to global markets. One coconut is needed to make one litre of Cut & Dry.

“We won’t be able to produce very big quantities because Cut & Dry is handmade and the coconuts need to grow, and you can’t speed that up,” Gabriel explained. “Nature needs to do its work.”

WIRD has teamed up with the Caribbean Agriculture Research and Development Institute (CARDI) and the International Trade Centre’s Alliances for Action programme to work with local farmers in Barbados and ensure a sustainable supply of coconuts for rum production.

“Our partnership with our local coconut farmers promotes Barbados as a hub for premium craft products, as well as celebrating Barbados’ rich heritage,” added Andrew Hassell, WIRD’s managing director.

“The distillery has been the backbone of the local rum industry for more than 130 years and we invest in our community. We are proud to source local molasses and coconuts to produce Planteray Cut & Dry, a true product of Barbados.”

Cut & Dry offers an aroma of coconut pulp with notes of vanilla, cinnamon and sesame oil, alongside flavours of coconut milk, vanilla, banana and green ginger.

Available in the US, the UK, France and the Caribbean, Planteray Cut & Dry Coconut Rum is priced at RRP US$35 per 700ml.

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