Posted 28 декабря 2021,, 09:23

Published 28 декабря 2021,, 09:23

Modified 24 декабря 2022,, 22:37

Updated 24 декабря 2022,, 22:37

Revolution for Revolution Day: Cuban authorities include rum in food stamps

28 декабря 2021, 09:23
The government of Cuba presented the citizens of the republic with a gift for the Triumph of the Revolution and the New Year: rum, which was always in abundance here, was added to the ration cards used to sell goods to people at subsidized prices.

Evgeniy Bai

According to food ration cards that have existed in Cuba for almost six decades, residents of the "Freedom Island" can monthly purchase eggs (10 pieces per family), rice (pound — 450 grams), white sugar and unrefined sugar (also by a pound), one bottle of vegetable oils, as well as matches. And now (probably to make a gift for the main Cuban holiday - the Day of the Triumph of the Revolution, which is celebrated on January 1), Bocoy rum has been added to the list of essential goods, which is sold in one and a half liter plastic bottles. The price of this alcoholic drink aged up to one year (in Russia, the cheapest Habana Club rum aged three years) is 132 pesos, which is approximately 5 dollars. At the same time, domestic H. Upmann cigarettes without filter began to be sold on ration cards at 17.5 pesos (73 cents).

Not all of the nearly 12 million Cubans consume spirits. But since rum is added to the basic basket, it makes no sense to refuse. And it is not necessary to drink it - many immediately wanted to resell this gift from Cuban Santa Claus in order to buy at least some food and celebrate the New Year with dignity. "There are rum and cigarettes and cigars!" He offers a drink for 600 pesos a bottle ($ 27) and cigarettes for 100 pesos ($ 4).

However, the alcohol and tobacco holiday in the Cuban capital is likely to end soon. The police began to fine dealers of both rum and cigarettes. One of them, who put up packs of cigarettes for sale in his window, was slapped with an unimaginable fine of 8,000 pesos ($ 330). For reference, the average salary on the island is around $ 87.

In addition, it turned out that cheap rum is of such poor quality that people are simply afraid of poisoning it.

"Why do we need so much rum", - says one Facebook user. "We'd rather be offered a piece of meat instead of this swill".

But there is no meat in Cuba, and there is not enough chicken, although from time to time, chicken suddenly pops up in food sets. And this is thanks to American imperialism, which, according to the official version of Havana, "maintains the criminal blockade of Cuba." According to the independent newspaper 14 and a half, in 2021, US chicken exports to Cuba increased by 91 percent compared to 2020 and amounted to $ 22.2 million (compared to 2019, an increase of 501 percent). Such is their interesting "blockade".

But there is another explanation for the lack of food on the island. Brazilian theologian Frey Betto, who was once very close to Commander Fidel Castro, says that "there is no hunger in Cuba", but the point is that "Cubans have too good an appetite."

According to Betto, who has just given a lengthy interview to the newspaper Granma, the organ of the Central Committee of the Cuban Communist Party, the country's government is very worried about its people and spends about $ 2 billion a year on food imports. However, in this interview, there is not a word about the kilometer-long queues that line up on the island every day, even for bread.

In 1985, the book Fidel and Religion was published in Cuba. Conversations with Frey Betto ”, which included numerous interviews of the theologian with the leader of the revolution. In it, in particular, Castro shares a recipe for making lobster and gives recommendations to those submitted how to make coffee with milk.

At that time, milk was only given to children under the age of seven. It is still in short supply, and coffee cannot be found anywhere else, even in stores that sell for dollars.

As for the lobsters, they disappeared forever from the sale soon after the victory of the revolution. However, no, I'm wrong. Lobsters and minced meat went on sale for a couple of days in mid-July this year, shortly after the country experienced an unprecedented social explosion.

As for the gift in the form of rum, it reminds Cubans of the difficult time of the early 90s, when Moscow stopped all massive subsidies to Cuba. Back then, it was often impossible to buy eggs or chickens with ration cards, but alcohol was always delivered punctually.