Check out my riff on this topic:

Where is George Burns when you need him, oh wait… he is turning over in his grave as I type!

There is a tectonic shift taking place in the cigar industry right before our eyes. The unthinkable is happening… Cuban cigars are becoming legal and many non-Cuban cigars are becoming illegal; due to the cost prohibitive nature of the FDA approval process.

If you told someone this would be happening no less than 5 years ago, they’d think your cigar had the funny green leaf in it.

But here we are on the verge of losing every cigar that has come to market post-2007. There is still a small sliver of hope, so at the moment all is not lost. But that is easier for me to say, because I am not a boutique cigar brand with employees and families who depend on the revenue from their cigar sales to make a living.

If nothing changes after today, many boutique brands will be out of business before the ink dries on the FDA’s draconian bill. So before I get into my thesis for the night, please take the time to sign this petition on whitehouse.gov (click here) After you have signed it, share the link with everyone you know.

This is just as much about personal freedoms as helping out the cigar industry.

With that said, the timeliness of all this is oddly aligned with the pending legalization of Cuban cigars. The net effect of this law will make cigar shops in the U.S.A. look a lot like cigar shops outside of the U.S.A. Your primary choices will be Davidoff’s and a wide assortment of Cuban cigars.

The way this new regulation is set up, you will need time and money to introduce a new cigar to the market.

Habanos S.A. (Cuba’s national cigar company) and major U.S. players have both time and money to ride out the application process.

The smaller boutique brands can’t afford to sit on product or potential product while a review of their latest creation festers in the FDA’s non-transparent approval process.

As a result, the smaller players will be weeded out of the market and the big dogs will swoop in to fill the void. Kind of sounds like the rest of America’s dystopian small business landscape.

This bill doesn’t eliminate the ‘health effects’ of cigars, it just clears the way for a booming stateside Cuban cigar trade which is on the horizon.

Timing of the FDA’s regulation tells me all I need to know. I’ll be the first to say it, in 2 years many boutique brands will be replaced by Cuban brands.

By the way, a credible source has told me Davidoff is already in the works with reintroducing a Cuban Davidoff.

I see you Presidente Obama!

Meanwhile, in the U.S., due to the embargo against all things Cuban; the cigars from the Caribbean’s largest island have reached a mythical status.

The shear exclusivity and clandestine aura surrounding them has inflated the price of not only legit Cuban cigars, but also the majority of fake ones entering our country.

You’d think Cuban cigars are the very horn atop a unicorns melon.

Guess what?

That mythos is about to be transferred over to post-regulation Dominican, Honduran and Nicaraguan cigars. Everyone boasts about having pre-embargo Cubans, but that won’t matter much when you can walk into any cigar shop in America and buy a Cuban cigar at will.

All those Cuban cigars people have bought at inflated prices and hoarded all these years will be worth ditto for the most part.

Especially when people realize Cuban cigars are not mythical creatures of the cosmos, but cigars that taste as good, maybe better or in some cases worse than non-Cuban cigars.

So the next ‘in thing’ just may be copping a box of post-regulation Jericho Hill’s from Crowned Heads or the next Tatuaje Halloween Edition in a back alley somewhere.

Thoughts?

P.S. Don’t forget to check out the new Cigar of the Week: Las Calaveras EL 2015 by Crowned Heads

-W

 

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