Bahama Bob's Rumstyles

Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Noble Pelican

     Pelicans are a most interesting bird.  The are quite common around the coastal areas of Florida and most of the Caribbean.  They spend the sinter and spring months here in the keys and migrate elsewhere for the summer and fall.  These are very large birds with huge wing spans, their flying and diving skills are very impressive.  It is a shame that many of them have just become scavengers hanging out at the fish cutting tables of the marinas instead of hunting their food as nature intended. 

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Who Do the Rum Smugglers Really Hurt?

     In a smaller country like the Dominican Republic, it is a very significant problem.   The smuggling of Rum and Tobacco products is costing the country millions of dollars in tax revenues.   This is just the tip of the iceberg though,  The loss of sales to the retailers, wholesalers, and manufacturers of legitimate products are also feeling the bite of these activities.   This is a chain of events that is seriously having a negative effect on the entire economy of the Dominican Republic.
Commerce Minister Jose del Castillo
     "Santo Domingo.-  fake rum and cigarette smuggling cost Dominican Republic’s coffers around RD$2.0 billion (US$45.5 million) in 2014, revealed Monday Industry and commerce minister José del Castillo during the launch of the Campaign Against Tax Evasion, Smuggling, Counterfeit Alcohol and Tobacco ."

     He said manufacturing and illegal commerce in rum and cigarettes which evades taxes, are adulterated, smuggled or of dubious origin, reveal a trend that he affirms requires attention. “It’s time to revert it before it becomes uncontrollable.”

     He said the illegal activity has harmful consequences for the government, retailers, formal productive sector and citizens.

     A lot of people look upon this as a way for people to get cheap tobacco or rum, but is reaching deep into the pockets of those that need the most help when large amounts of revenues are lost like this.  This doesn't even consider the cost of tracking down the culprits and bringing them to justice.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Liquor Ads:, What do They Influenced?

      In an article in AdWeek, I ran across this interesting article about a study done at the University of Texas, Austin.  It has found that the effect of advertising does not make people want to drink or drink any more, but rather seems to effect what they are drinking.   This is for me a good thing, it means hat the government does not need to get into the media business again and limit what Americans can see in the media.
   A new study of alcohol consumption and advertising from 1971 to present found per capita drinking remained flat. 

     Alcohol marketers have two reasons to feel good about the findings of a new academic study on advertising impact.   For one, their money seems to be well spent on generating new or loyal customers. But at the same time, their ads don't seem to be turning America into a nation of drunks.   A new study from the University of Texas at Austin, led by advertising professor Gary Wilcox, suggests ads have little impact on how much wine, beer or liquor people consume.   The study looked at alcohol sales between 1971 and 2011 and found that during the 40-year time frame, per capita consumption remained relatively unchanged. In that time period, the study reports, alcohol advertising in the U.S. increased more than 400 percent. 

     "Relating these findings to previous research reveals a consistency in that there is either no relationship or a weak one between advertising and aggregate sales," the report states. "Over this time period, beer sales have exhibited a downward trend since the early 1990s, while wine and liquor have increased their share of total alcohol sales. This is despite large increases in advertising expenditures across all three categories of alcohol."   While advertising might have little impact on how much we drink, the study says it's still safe to assume that ads are effective at guiding brand preference.
    "Although criticisms of alcohol advertising and promotional methods abound, remedies that would restrict or overly regulate such communication activities usually do not have the desired effect of reducing consumption," wrote Wilcox, the study's lead professor. "Instead, a more logical alternative would be to communicate as much information as possible to the public about the subject and encourage all viewpoints so our society makes an autonomous, rational choice regarding alcohol consumption."
     I found this article very enlightening and on that is worth reading.  I'm glad to see that there are people in this country that believe that we are a nation of sheep that will follow one after another right into the sea and our demise.   Advertising is a means of communication of wares and not a hypnotic trance that makes us stupid.   ;o)



Thursday, March 26, 2015

Springtime in Key West

     For the past couple of weeks, we are getting the first signs of spring down here in Key West.  The return of some of the migratory birds flowers blooming, and a general warming trend with the winds decreasing.   This is a really wonderful thing for us, and a time to get out on the water and enjoy all that makes the tropics so wonderful.

     I know, those of you that have been suffering all winter with 100 or more inches of snow don't believe that spring is something that we can actually notice.  There are significant difference in our seasons as well.  I went out on the waters last week for the first time in many weeks, the seas were calm and the ride was very smooth and wonderful.   I arrived at Bahia Honda dry and the 80 degree air temp put a smile on my face as I came under the old railroad bridge.   

     The birds are different, the air is warm and the flowers are beginning to bloom again, just like everywhere else when spring arrives,   I just hope that your spring has arrived bringing a wonderful change for you like it has for us down here.   ;o)

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Underwater Aging Comes Under Fire from FDA

US federal authorities have taken a dim view of ageing wine underwater, warning it may be illegal to sell wine that have been aged that way.

     In 2013 Napa producer Mira placed 48 bottles of its 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon in the waters of Charleston Harbor to see what effect underwater ageing would have.   In November last year the bottles were salvaged, tasted and the process declared a success. The winery’s president, Jim Dyke, announced they would age twice as much for twice as long beginning next month alongside several other cases which are currently underwater in the harbor. 
     However, Dyke may have to shelve his plans as the practice has caught the attention of the Treasury Department’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau who warned that potential contact with ocean water would render the wines “adulterated” and thus illegal to sell.   The bureau, which oversees alcohol labelling, can prohibit wineries, breweries and distilleries from selling or shipping their products if they are judged to have been “adulterated” in some way.   The bureau referred to the US Food and Drug Administration which said that wine aged underwater “may” render than adulterated under federal law because they have been stored in “unsanitary” conditions.
     The bureau continued that degradation of the seal – wax and cork – while underwater could lead to the wine being exposed to: “Gasoline, oil, heavy metals, plastics, drug residues, pesticides, as well as various types of filth, including waste materials from biological sources, sludge, decaying organic matter, runoff from farms, effluents from sewage treatment plants, and bilge waters from vessels.”  
     Dyke said he was disappointed with the news but pointed out that all of the bottles he’d aged underwater and then tasted, none showed any hint of contamination with seawater.
     For years now the Cayman Spirits Company has been producing Seven Fathoms Rum, a really fine rum that is aged underwater in special barrels in the ocean just off of Grand Cayman.  This is a very fine rum, one that I find to be very flavorful and clean.   I r
eally have to question the FDA on this one, because if the aging barrels are properly sealed and protected from the encroachment of sea water the end product is greatly enhanced by the constant movement of the sea and the very consistent temperatures.    The process needs to be looked at on an individual bassis and not just a "blanket" rule.  


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Feeling Stout? Diageo to List Calorie Counts

Nutritional labels to appear on drinks including Guinness, Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff

     Diageo PLC is following the lead of the food industry by offering calorie counts and other content information on many of its biggest-selling products, from Johnnie Walker Scotch whisky to Smirnoff vodka. 

     The world's biggest drinks company said Thursday that it would begin displaying per-serving nutrition and alcohol-content information on its labels and online, in what it said was a first for the industry. 

     That will include Guinness, which for much of the 20th century was marketed as "good for you" for its high iron content. Doctors even prescribed the stout to pregnant women. 

     The U.S. is likely to be the first market to see the new labels, which could hit the shelves in the next few months. Diageo has received approval from the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau for a "serving facts" panel to be added to its labels, with per-serving information on calories, fat content and alcohol by volume. Discussions with the bureau started nearly 10 years ago, according to a Diageo spokeswoman. 

     The first product to include the new label in the U.S. is likely to be Smirnoff, Diageo's biggest-selling brand in North America. 

     Nutritional labeling on food is a hot topic in the U.S. as consumers become more health-conscious. Late last year, the Food and Drug Administration issued rules requiring restaurants with at least 20 locations to display the calorie count of food items on their menus.
     The TTB (Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau) has issued some basic guidelines of the labeling.  The ruling allows "Serving Facts" statements that include the serving size, the number of servings per container, the number of calories, and the number of grams of carbohydrates, protein, and fat per serving. Additionally, Serving Facts statements may include information about the alcohol content of the product as a percentage of alcohol by volume and may also include a statement of the fluid ounces of pure ethyl alcohol per serving.
     This is something that will really help in the controversy over what has been added to the spirits.  Sugar content, and other additives will become apparent with these labels, as long as people read them.  Kudos to Diageo for leading the way.   ;o)

Monday, March 23, 2015

Kenny Chesney's Fishbowl Spirits, LLC. Appoints David Farmer as President

David Farmer
     Fishbowl Spirits, LLC, announced that David Farmer has been appointed as President, effective

 immediately.    Fishbowl Spirits is the entity through which Kenny Chesney created and produces

Blue Chair Bay Rum.   This newly-created position, David Farmer will be responsible for overseeing

all aspects of the operation of Fishbowl Spirits’ and will report directly to Kenny Chesney, Fishbowl

Spirits’ Chairman.
    David Farmer will be continuing to serve as Chesney’s Tour Manager, responsible for coordinating over 100 employees on tours.  He has been a big part of what has made Kenny Chesney the biggest ticket-seller of the 21st Century,   Farmer has spent 18 years helping establish the live franchise that supports  eight time Entertainer of the Year, Kenny Chesney's commitment to quality, fun and providing a concert experience his audience will never forget.    Farmer will manage and further integrate the Fishbowl Spirits team as Blue Chair Bay Rum hits the road this spring as one of the sponsors of Kenny Chesney’s Big Revival Tour.