Are you a cigar enthusiast? Well guess what, Barack Obama’s Food and Drug Administration is set to have their grubby big-government hands ready to choke the life out of your hobby. If the government prevails the cost of stogies is going to skyrocket.
The FDA is planning a whole new slew of big-government regulations that would completely change the way that cigars are treated in the eyes of the law.
Amongt these proposed regulations? Part of being a ‘premium’ cigar would mean that it would be required to cost at a minimum $10 a stick. That’s right the federal government wants to step in and actually dictate the minimum pricing of a consumer product. Even though currently over 80% of cigars sell for less then that and the vast majority are not any less ‘premium’ then the more expensive smokes.
Do you have a local cigar lounge with a nice walk-in humidor that you enjoy visiting? Well if Obama’s FDA get’s their way you can kiss that goodbye. Because the FDA would put a ban on self-serve sales.
Do you enjoy infused or flavored handmade cigar? Cigar’s like Rocky Patel Java, Drew Estate ACID, CAO Flavours and many more? Or even cigars whose wrapper’s are aged in rum or bourbon barrels? Kiss those goodbye if Obama’s FDA have their way.
The proposed FDA regulations would define a ‘premium’ cigar as the following:
- wrapped in whole tobacco leaf;
- contains a 100 percent leaf tobacco binder;
- contains primarily long filler tobacco;
- is made by combining manually the wrapper, filler, and binder;
- has no filter, tip, or non-tobacco mouthpiece and is capped by hand;
- has a retail price (after any discounts or coupons) of no less than $10 per cigar;
- does not have a characterizing flavor other than tobacco;
- weighs more than 6 pounds per 1000 units.
On the surface most of those aren’t really bad until you get to the minimum price point and flavor definitions.
The FDA also wants to more closely monitor the coming-to-market process, and require cigar manufacturers to submit new blends for testing and approval. The FDA estimates that between 10 and 50 percent of the cigars on the market today will exit the market after the proposed regulation due to the increased costs. Thus possible forever taking your favorite cigar away from you.
Bipartisan legislation is in the works to attempt to fight the FDA’s power grab, in the House of Representatives, Republicans have submitted House Resolution 792, introduced by Florida Rep. Bill Posey. This one is currently in the House Subcommittee on Health. Democrat Senator Bill Nelson has introduced Senate Bill 772 which is also still in committee.
Both bills essentially exempt cigars from FDA regulation.
I enjoy going to my local cigar lounge. It is a chance to meet with friends and make new ones. The cigar hobby brings together people from all walks of life and all sides of the political spectrum, like the barber shop or local hardware store in days of past.
The federal government has no business interfering with that type of camaraderie, fellowship, and personal pursuit.
If these bills fail and the FDA big-government power grab succeeds it will just be more freedom lost at the hands of the power hungry Obama administration.
Call your member of Congress. Tell them how you feel about this federal act of tyranny against our passion for great cigars.