ProCigar had its annual festival last week and cigar enthusiast from all over traveled to the Dominican Republic for one of the best cigar experiences around. Guests attended factory tours, field trips, cigar seminars and gala dinners. Some were so lucky to travel to the mountain regions of the Dominican Republic to visit Santiago’s foothill tobacco farms along with some of the most fruitful tobacco factories in the cigar industry.
ProCigar was created in 1992 and celebrates its 21st anniversary with this year’s festival. The goal behind ProCigar is to protect and preserve the tobacco industry in the Dominican Republic. ProCigar feels that the Dominican Republic is THE place for tobacco and wants the DR to be recognized as Cigar Country.
ProCigar President Hendrik Kelner stated that the Dominican Republic was the largest exporter of premium cigars in 2012, not Nicaragua. “Not only has the Dominican Republic been the biggest exporter of premium cigars during the last 20 years, but it will continue being so for many more years,” Kelner told Cigar Aficionado.
It was also noted that the cigar industry in the Dominican Republic represents $500,000,000 worth of economy there, which is equivalent to 120,000 direct jobs. Another positive, ProCigar hosted a charity auction during the festival’s closing dinner and all net proceeds went to the Voluntariado de Jesus con los Ninos (a non-profit organization for ill children) and the Sociedad San Vicente de Paul (a senior retirement home for low income elders in the Dominican Republic).
For more information on ProCigar visit procigar.org