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RUm2 Sugar cane was introduced from Java into Mauritius under the Dutch (1598-1710) to make mainly an alcoholic drink through fermentation, although sugar was produced on a very small scale in 1696. The historical evolution of the rum industry in Mauritius is no less enriching than that of the Caribbean or that of the South America.It was Mr Pierre Charles Francois Harel who initially proposed the concept of local distillation of rum in Mauritius, in 1850. Thanks to him, Mauritius today proudly houses distilleries.Presently, the industrial rum represents about 90% of the world production of rum.Mauritius is one of a few countries that produce both industrial and agricultural rum.RUm4The agricultural rum is a high quality rum known and appreciated for its specific aroma and flavour. A new category of rum, the island recipe rum is also produced in Mauritius using artisanal processes to macerate tropical fruits and spices from the island.Mauritius is now left with only 5 sugar mills which are supplying sugarcane juice as well as molasses for the production of rum; over and above the production of sugar. The oldest operational distillery on the Island of Mauritius dates back to 1926. Mauritius is now home to 6 distillers of which two mark the history of our sugar estates.

Three distillers namely Rhumerie de Chamarel, Rhumerie de Mascareignes and St Aubin have authorized licence to produce agricultural rum while Grays, Indian Ocean Rum Company and Oxenham are distillers producing traditional rums.

The direct workforce in the rum industry exceeds 1700.

Export of Mauritian rum has witnessed a significant increase of 30% from 2007 to 2012 and the agricultural rum and island recipe rum have started penetration in the international markets as from 2010. A total volume of 619,274 litres of rum have been exported in 2012.


Our main exports markets in 2012 were the Netherlands (32.2%), the UK (21.5%) and the USA (10.2%).



Enterprise Mauritius invited Global Rum Aficionado, Ian Burrell to facilitate two days Rum Festival comprising blind tastings, exclusive lectures, bar tender competitions and visits to the region’s rum distillers with the fundamental objective to raise the image of the Mauritian rum industry.

It was an opportunity for Enterprise Mauritius to have in our midst experts from the International Rum Industry – Robert Burr, Eric Seed, Bernhard Schäffer, Philippe Buchle, Dirk Becker and Gracheva Victoria among others.

Among rum enthusiasts, the unique spirits produced in Mauritius are gaining greater appreciation with a reputation of quality and value. Ian Burrell expressed his appreciation about the Mauritian rums and stated that with the growing culture of cocktail consumption, there lies a great potential for our rum worldwide.