The International Scientific and Technical Colloquium of Light Rum is an event that grows in importance and ensures the maintenance of rum tradition in Cuba. That idea was emphasized by the Minister of the Food Industry, María del Carmen Concepción, during the first day of the event.
According to the official, it is remarkable the intergenerational dialogue enabled by the meeting and the multiplicity of specialists —including 200 national delegates and representatives from other 10 nations—. She also highlighted the Cuban identity, expertise and sacrifices of those people who make this the best rum in the world. Besides, she mentioned, as a challenge for the sector, the need of working in the design and creation of new brands and increase the revenues expected.
On the other side, the president of the Corporation Cuba Ron and Havana Club International, Juan González Escalona, said that this is a moment for thinking and exchanging between producers and traders of Cuban rum. He affirmed the industry's main challenges are increasing export revenues, improving its structural quality, incorporating more added values to enrich exportable and domestic supply, and consolidating its contribution in economic and trade terms.
He explained that, due to the competitiveness, it will be necessary to raise the intrinsic quality and presentation of the productions, in order to reach an income of 157 million dollars by 2020 —according to the company projections—. "Maestros, tradition and work teach us how to maintain and develop our abilities. We know how to make the best rum in the world and we have to take advantage of it", he concluded.
Challenges and perspectives: keeping feet on the ground
Focused on protecting and developing new brands, as well as on improving productive capacities, the Colloquium delegates analyzed the development program of the rum industry. In the words of First Vice President of Cuba Ron, Carlos Soto, the premises which guide this process are, among others, satisfying domestic consumption; expanding exports to other markets; guaranteeing their quality; increasing the portfolio of business opportunities; finding new forms of financing; fostering research, development and innovation; and expanding aging and cooperage facilities.
He pointed out that new investments —up to 87.6 million CUC until 2020— will enable the recovery of energy and cooling blocks, the automation of all production processes and the design of new products, among other possibilities.
Meanwhile, the alcohol industry's investment program aims to double the production of fine and superfine alcohols, expand and improve the wasting treatment system in all its plants and reduce the transportation costs of the products.
Aiming to promoting a flexible industry capable enough to elaborate products with added values and with the quality demanded by the customer, Tecnoazúcar has confirmed that it has all the conditions to ensure the raw material needed by the rum industry.