Budget bashing- thank you Mr Osborne – not!

As expected the Chancellor has bashed the smoker and the drinker… easy targets I suppose.

Duty on all tobacco products to rise by 5% above inflation from 18:00 on the 21/03/12 – You may think that it doesn’t sound like much but when you factor in that many of the cigar importers absorbed industry price increases last year and are unlikely to do so again this year, I think that the overall increase is likely to be HUGE.

Perhaps the reality will look like this: 5% duty increase plus 3.4% inflation, plus industry price increase and of course plus 20% VAT on the lot. We won’t know how much that will total to until we receive the updates from the various importers but it looks like 10-15% overall to me which for an already expensive market is fairly hefty.

No change to existing plans on alcohol duty – meaning the duty will rise 2% above the rate of inflation – so not quite as awful for our single malt whisky customers.

The short term good news is that we will hold our mail order prices for as long as our previous stocks last but the sound advice is stock up soon before the price increases filter through.

Our retail shops will also hold their Havana cigar prices until the end of this month and having just come back from a trip to Turmeaus cigar shops in Liverpool and Chester I can confirm that stock levels are as always up to the ceiling but… sales are brisk so take advantage of pre-budget prices whilst you can.

Auction time is getting closer and Cigar Journal gave us a nice write up HERE. Drop me an email for advice if you are a prospective buyer or seller.

UK regionals editions are in very small supply now with the last of all available now except for reasonable stocks of Juan Lopez Seleccion Suprema and El Rey del Mundo Choix de L’Epoque. See the full range HERE.

Last few cabinets of Punch Orchant Seleccion no.11 now released and available although our Mayfair shop seems to be selling more of these than anything else this week! If you fancy an awesome ‘anytime robusto’ go for the Bolivar Royal Corona Orchant Seleccion – dark wrappers and quite delicious. See the full range HERE.

Peaceful puffing

C.Gars Beat the Budget Cartoon