Local Rum brand Rum Fire, has decided to absorb the recent tax on overproof rum that was recently implemented by the Jamaican Government.
According to the director of brand Rum Fire, Christelle Harris, partygoers will not experience an increase in the price for Rum Fire Rum because of Jamaica's 50th anniversary celebrations and out of concern for the consumers who are in a party mode.
Rum Fire has been a title sponsor for a lot of dancehall shows and parties since their debut in 2011, most noticeably the 2011 staging of Supreme Promotions' Sting. And according to Christelle Harris, who is also a former Miss Jamaica runner-up, the level of participation in sponsorship will not decrease.
"Taxation will not impact on our sponsorship, however, it will impact on how deals are formulated. Deals will be modified but not hugely, and the taxation will not have any bearing on how much events we sponsor," she said.
"There is nothing that we can do about the taxation, however, we have decided to give consumers a break for the summer in observing Jamaica 50. Therefore, we will be absorbing the additional cost as a result of the taxation," Harris said.
The director also hopes to create consumer familiarity with the product as well as make alcohol affordable for low-wage earners.
"We hope this will result in a lot of persons who never tried the product before to actually try it. There are two things promised in life and they are death and taxation. We can't blame the Government for doing their job. We are in a very sensitive economic climate, but to tax so heavily on overproof rum which is such a staple to Jamaicans, particularly the low-income earners, I do think it could have been done to a lesser extent. To take away the little enjoyment that people have is unfair," Harris said.
She also disclosed that Rum Fire is aiming to give consumers a chance to enjoy themselves and celebrate without emptying their pockets.
Rum Fire is currently in negotiations to be a part of the upcoming Dream Weekend party series. Rum Fire is also the title sponsor for the upcoming Music Industry Achievers (MIA) award and are also sponsors of a party called Humidity to be hosted in Ocho Rios.
The director, however, was tight-lipped as it relates to information about how much revenue the company will have to find in order to absorb the tax. At present, a bottle of Rum Fire Overproof Rum costs $667.45 and a flask costs $177. The price will remain as such for the duration of the summer. Overproof rum was recently increased by more than 250 per cent.