White rum remains the most popular rum in the off-trade, but sales of flavoured and spiced rums are growing quickly, with almost 10 million bottles sold in the last 12 months – just over half a million bottles fewer than white rum.
Both the white rum and flavoured & spiced rum categories were worth £137m ($178m) over 2018, according to the UK’s Wine and Spirit Association’s latest Market Report.
And the WSTA predicts that, by the end of this year, flavoured and spiced rums will knock white rum off top-spot as the most popular type of rum for shoppers in supermarkets and off-licenses.
Sales of golden and dark rum in bars, pubs and restaurants have also risen, with golden rum the most popular choice (sales of golden rum were worth £374m ($486m), an increase of 7% on the prior year).
The number of rum brands available has also grown significantly: in 2006, there were around 50 rum brands on the UK market, but there are now close to 200. An increasing number of artisan spirits producers are now crafting their own rum brands alongside an existing gin range.
Total UK spirits sales were worth just over £11bn ($14bn) in 2018.