Rocky Patel Defends Cigars on Fox News

March 20, 2018

By David Savona - Cigar Aficionado

Cigarmaker Rocky Patel appeared on "Tucker Carlson Tonight" on Monday evening. The Fox News show had a segment devoted to premium cigars, featuring a one-on-one interview between host Carlson and Patel, the owner of Rocky Patel Premium Cigars, which makes cigars in Honduras and Nicaragua. Patel, a tireless supporter of cigar rights, spoke about how the FDA is overregulating the cigar business. 

"Congress never intended premium cigars to be regulated," Patel told Carlson. "The FDA took it upon themselves to decide to [have a] one glove fits all size approach and start regulating the premium cigar industry. They didn't take the opportunity to investigate and understand the nature of the premium cigar industry."

Patel spoke about the nature of the premium cigar business, emphasizing how it is made up of many family owned businesses. "It's a cottage industry, a unique industry," he said. He compared cigar smoking to other adult pursuits, like drinking fine wine or premium Scotch. "You certainly don't see kids sitting around the schoolyard chain smoking cigars," he said. 

"These rules are so outrageous, they're so burdensome, they're impossible to comply with. It's basically de facto prohibition," he said. 

Carlson called the regulations "senseless."

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