Lawmakers want feds to protect “Connecticut” shade tobacco
HARTFORD — Members of Connecticut’s congressional delegation want federal officials to enforce existing regulations on tobacco labeling, accusing foreign competitors of mislabeling their cigars as Connecticut shade tobacco.
U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy and Reps. John Larson and Joe Courtney, all Democrats, sent a letter Monday to the acting commissioner and acting chairman of the Food and Drug Administration and Federal Trade Commission, seeking action.
Connecticut shade tobacco, which is used as a wrapper for premium cigars, is renowned worldwide. The lawmakers say the Connecticut shade tobacco seeds are now grown elsewhere in the Northeast, as well as in Ecuador and other parts of Latin America. They say the different soils and climate conditions can change the taste greatly.
They say labels contain the word “Connecticut” but unclear information about the tobacco’s origin.