In an effort to support racial equality, Maison Ferrand will rename its Plantation Rum.
Founder Alexandre Gabriel originally dubbed the brand “Plantation Rum” because of the word meaning, “a large farm.” He grew up on a farm and founded Cognac producer Maison Ferrand in 1989.
In light of George Floyd’s murder at the hands of police and the protests that have come in its wake, the company has decided it’s time for an “evolution” of the brand’s name, which has obvious links to slavery.
“As the dialogue on racial equality continues globally, we understand the hurtful connotation the word ‘plantation’ can evoke to some people, especially in its association with much graver images and dark realities of the past,” said Gabriel, Plantation Rum’s master blender.
“We look to grow in our understanding of these difficult issues and while we don’t currently have all the details of what our brand name evolution will involve, we want to let everyone know that we are working to make fitting changes.”
Made at West Indies Rum Distillery in Barbados, the Rum will maintain its production methods and make no changes to its liquid product.
“We consider our company’s cultural diversity a fundamental strength,” said marketing and communications director Angelique Jullienne. “We have always drawn on our multiculturalism to guide our actions, our communications and our relationships with customers and colleagues around the world. We strongly affirm our policy that everyone associated with Plantation Rum and West Indies Rum Distillery is treated with respect and dignity.”
“This is a time for global reflection and a moment to improve ourselves and the communities we live in,” remarked the Rum brand.
Stephanie Simbo, Plantation Rum’s global brand manager, added: “We pride ourselves on making delicious rum for people to enjoy and never want any part of their experience to create feelings of discomfort.
“To that end, we want to be on the side of actions and solutions. As you can imagine, evolving a brand name is a significant undertaking for a family business like ours. We humbly ask that everyone have patience as we move to make these changes as quickly as possible.”
The company expects it to take over two years to rebrand their product.