Amarula is a cream liqueur from South Africa. It is made with sugar, cream and the fruit of the African marula tree (Sclerocarya birrea) which is also locally called the Elephant tree or the Marriage Tree. It has an alcohol content of 17% by volume. It has had some success at international spirit ratings competitions, winning a gold medal at the 2006 San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
Amarula was first marketed by Southern Liqueur Company of South Africa (the current trademark owners and wholly owned subsidiary of Distell Group Limited) as a liqueur in September 1989, the Amarula spirit having been launched in 1983. It has the taste of slightly fruity caramel.
Elephants enjoy eating the fruit of the marula tree. Because of the marula tree’s association with elephants, the distiller has made them its symbol and supports elephant conservation efforts, co-funding the Amarula Elephant Research Programme at the University of Natal, Durban. For marketing efforts, it produces elephant-themed collectible items. In 2019 they removed the elephant from the bottle branding to highlight the need for conservation efforts before the animal becomes extinct.