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Weekly Cigar News Sampler: FDA Comment Period Extended, J.C. Newman’s Billboard Campaign, and More

8 Jun 2018

As we have since July 2006, each Friday we’ll post our sampling of cigar news and other items of interest from the week. Below is our latest, which is the 582nd in the series.

1) Yesterday—not long after 33 members of Congress signed a letter to Mick Mulvaney, director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), asking him to extend the comment period on FDA premium cigar regulation—the FDA announced a 30-day extension. July 25 is the new deadline for comments concerning the regulation of premium cigars (and July 19 for comments concerning the regulation of flavors in tobacco products). If you’d like to submit your own comments, you may do so here.

2) Taking a page from the film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, J.C. Newman’s “Save Cigar City” campaign is now employing electronic billboards across Florida to promulgate the message of cigar freedom. The message is expected to be viewed over two million times by June 25. The billboards are intended to “complement the large banners visible from Interstate 4 that J.C. Newman has hung from its iconic 108-year-old cigar factory’s clock tower in Tampa’s Ybor City National Historic Landmark District, and the 100,000 postage-paid FDA comment cards that J.C. Newman has distributed to premium cigar retailers across the country,” reads a press release. “Our goal is to spread the word about how America’s historic premium cigar industry is under serious threat from excessive government regulation,” said Eric Newman, president of J.C. Newman. “According to the FDA’s own estimates, regulation will put up to half of the cigar industry out of business—including the last operating cigar factory in ‘Cigar City.’”

3) Random Read: A tribute to the heroes of D-Day, including Star Trek‘s James Doohan, whose life was saved during the operation because he smoked. (He was shot in the chest, but the bullet was stopped by the cigarette case in his pocket.)

4) Inside the Industry: Black Label Trading Co. (BLTC) is teaming up with Jim “Island Jim” Robinson, who is known as a brand owner and for his Leaf and Bean shop in Pittsburgh. Together, they are launching Leaf by James, a single-vitola blend made at BLTC’s Fabrica Oveja Negra in Estelí. The Toro (6 x 50, $9.95) sports a Pennsylvania Broadleaf wrapper around an Ecuadorian Habano binder and filler tobaccos from Nicaragua. It is available at Leaf and Bean starting today; there will be a national release later this summer.

5) From the Archives: Win the war on mold in your humidor.

6) Deal of the Week: Fancy humidors can be great, but when it comes to functionality and value you’d be hard-pressed to beat an acrylic jar like this one, which is currently on sale for $14 (with free Amazon Prime shipping). [Also, check out this cigar-themed Game of Thrones T-shirt: “That’s what I do: I smoke cigars and I know things.”]

The Stogie Guys

photo credit: Stogie Guys / J.C. Newman

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