On August 8th, 2016, premium cigars will be subject to regulations introduced by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This will drastically change the way new products will be introduced to the marketplace. One thing that has been the subject of much conversation is something called the “grandfather” date to market a premium cigar product without being subject to regulation. Today, we take a look at this topic more closely.
With the current FDA regulations, the grandfather date has been set to February 15, 2007. The other important date is August 8th, 2016. It is on or or after that new products introduced will be subject to regulation. These two dates create three groups of premium cigar products.
- Products Introduced Prior to February 15, 2007: Products in this group are eligible to be grandfathered and exempt from regulation.
- Products Currently on the Market Between February 15, 2007 and August 8th 2016: Products in this group will be given a two year grace period to apply for approval to be on the market by the FDA. There is an additional one year window where the FDA will review the application for approval.
- Products Introduced After August 8th, 2016: Before these products can be introduced to the marketplace, they must submit an application and receive FDA approval.
The Grandfather Date
The grandfather date has been the subject of much debate for the past two years. The premium cigar industry has attempted to push this date from the February 15, 2007 to a future date.
The original selection of the February 15 2007 date was somewhat arbitrary. It happens to be the date the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act was introduced. It is this act that became law and empowered the FDA to regulate premium cigars.