Storms Not Enough to Stop Cuban Tobacco Crop
Even with two hurricanes ripping through the region, western Cuba is expected to produce one of its tobacco best crops in quite a while. The plants are ready for harvest in the Vuuelta Abajo section of the island, and barns are starting to fill with those that have already been plucked. Apparently, this year's take is oily, which should do something to make this year's batch flavorful (I hope).
The 2008 storms caused $10 billion in damage to the island nation, stretching the effects of the ongoing financial crisis. Approximately 5,000 curing barns were damaged (or destroyed), and the repairs are still not complete. Despite the fact that most of the harvest had occurred before the hurricanes reached Cuba, the crop remained secure, as Cuban officials acted quickly to move the tobacco to safer storage facilities. But, up to 2 million pounds of tobacco were lost, according to Habanos S.A.
[Via Reuters, photo by Ron Melendi]