The Molasses Act was a law passed by British Parliament to ensure profitable control of industry and commerce.
The Molasses Act is considered part of the Acts of Trade and Navigation, which were a series of laws passed by Parliament during the 17th and 18th centuries to ensure profitable control of the industry and commerce of British colonies around the globe. Enacted by Parliament on December 25, 1733, the act imposed duties and shipping restrictions on sugar and molasses imported into the North American colonies. Due to its lax enforcement, however, the Molasses Act encouraged a proliferation in smuggling throughout the colonies. When the act expired in 1763, it was replaced by the more restrictive Sugar Act of 1764. The more severe provisions of the Sugar Act angered many Americans and moved them one step further along the road to revolution.