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Camacho And Orange Bowl Part Ways

G. Clay Whittaker
Posted: January 3, 2012

After an aggressive campaign from several health groups and three U.S. Senators, Camacho Cigars will no longer sponsor tomorrow’s Orange Bowl. Members of the Orange Bowl Committee and the Pinellas Park, Florida, company, a unit of Switzerland's Davidoff of Geneva, agreed that it was the best decision in light of the circumstances.

“This is not what either of our organizations envisioned when we set up our partnership,” said Dylan Austin, head of marketing for Camacho. “Our support for the decision that was ultimately taken was out of respect for the history and long-term community involvement of the Orange Bowl Committee.”

The issue came to a head just before Christmas, when several health organizations, including some aimed at preventing childhood tobacco use, sent an open letter to both the Orange Bowl Committee and the NCAA asking them to remove the sponsorship and cancel the three-year agreement.

Senators Dick Durbin, Frank Lautenberg, and Richard Blumental, all Democrats, joined in the call to remove the sponsorship from the January 4 college football game. The organizations claim Camacho's sponsorship will be seen as an NCAA endorsement of smoking, and that children will associate the brand with role models in the collegiate athletics community.

Camacho is disappointed to see the partnership go. “Whenever a company like ours gives up the opportunity to promote a legal product, which is manufactured, marketed and sold exclusively for and to adults, it is unfortunate. It is also unfortunate that we have forfeited an opportunity to contribute, through our partnership, to a first class south Florida organization that is highly regarded and very proactive in the community,” said Austin.

Under the agreement, Camacho would have had a presence for the Orange Bowl at Sun Life stadium that would include smoking lounge areas open to fans during pre-game events. Lounges would be constructed in areas already designated for smoking. Camacho Cigars was among more than 50 partners in a sponsor list that included Stella Artois and Bacardi, two brands that produce adult beverages.

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Comments   23 comment(s)

Michael DiCioccio January 3, 2012 9:35pm ET

Oh, cool. I'm glad that the NCAA's endorsement of drinking alcohol is fine though. Pot. Kettle. Black.


KIM BROWN — SHERWOOD PARK, AB, CANADA,  —  January 3, 2012 10:29pm ET

So it's okay to "expose" children to alcoholic beverages in the stands, but cigar smoking in restricted, designated areas that children aren't allowed is some how damaging? Such hypocrisy!


Bill Carrington — New Jersey, U.S.A.,  —  January 3, 2012 10:33pm ET

It is sad that this partnership had to be terminated, and will be noted by cigar smokers in Lautenberg's New Jersey.


Rob Cox January 3, 2012 10:52pm ET

I am proud that Camacho took the high road in the face of hypocrisy... they will be better off not associating themselves with such company.

Cigars may not be healthy, whether sporadically or in excess, but try sitting down and eating a bag of oranges at the same rate. Can't imagine a doctor telling you to do that, but I also don't imagine a politician throwing up his/her arms up about it either...


Frederick Amodeo — Bellport, New York, USA,  —  January 4, 2012 1:01am ET

Well, here we go again. How can so called intelligent people make so many unintelligent decisions? As John Adams said, "In my many years I have come to the conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm and three or more is congress." How can one group so effect the thinking of so called rational minds that only cigars can be turned away from co-sponsoring the Orange Bowl while other legal sale items sold by Bacardi and beer companies be ok? I guess we should ask for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee. It will only be a short time in the future before we cannot think or make judgement or decisions for ourselves without someone dictating what we want or need. I am not for illegal selling of or distributing of anything to minors. Yes media can influence younger minds, as does the AXE commercial for much older women seducing younger boys into sex because of the smell of a spray-on cologne. Is it right, no, is it allowed, yes, do we teach our youth about the meaning and mis-representation of the product, I guess it depends on the adults.
"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of congress. But I repeat myself." Mark Twain said this, and I agree. When will we understand that the freedoms afforded in this country are not always good, but they are ours to choose. This is the folly that is democracy, choice and freedoms come with dangers in the choices one makes, the beauty is in the ability to choose.
Lastly, the government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not take from somebody else! I am tired of being the one being taken from!
Fred Amodeo - NY


bo mcelya — west memphis, ar, usa,  —  January 4, 2012 4:50am ET

Oh well, I suppose the leaders of this pack of goody two shoes will take their kids to the game and then stop at Mickey Dee's on the way home to feed them some good old artery clogging slop and then maybe a delicious and nutritious Twinkie or King Don before beddie bye and hopefully the three demoRATS will get their comeuppance at the next election. Jeez, what is our once free country coming to?


Ben Saunders — Bath, UK,  —  January 4, 2012 11:43am ET

What a shame. Reading this column and related left me completely confused. I shan't ramble on about righ and wrong and hypocorism as it's been written above to a much better quality then I could input. But I wanted to share my disappointment along with the cigar lovers and aficionado of the world. A real shame.


Mike Mulcahy January 4, 2012 12:08pm ET

Apparently, Camacho did not make the appropriate "contributions" to make this an authorized partnership!


DENNIS M THRASHER SR — BIRMINGHAM, MI, UNITED STATES,  —  January 4, 2012 3:20pm ET

While I am sympathetic to the prior commentary, and a devoted cigar smoker myself, I am also a father and grandfather. Any behavior that presents smoking as a desirable habit should and must be discouraged. Especially in places where children can witness this as acceptable or even desirable adult behavior. I can always smoke in cigar bars where no children are present even in passing or at home amongst friends. We need to be careful about promoting things that are harmful to the young and impressionable. Its the responsible thing to do.


Ernest Quintiliani January 4, 2012 10:46pm ET

Better to teach the new generations moderation, wouldn't it, Mr. Thrasher? According to your "all for the children" attitude, the very organization which hosts this forum should be shut down or regulated out of existence.


Andrew Bejarano — Mesilla Park, New Mexico, United States Of America,  —  January 5, 2012 1:01am ET

Camacho took the high road and left. As a someone who supports the Democratic party I feel that there are more important things to worry about than this. As for the Orange Bowl, don't like the bowl season so I won't watch, but the NCAA looks foolish right now when they too have bigger problems than Bowl game sponsors.


MaduroWoman.com January 5, 2012 4:26am ET

This really boils down to the lack of education and understanding of cigars. It's lumped in the cigarette smoking group. And they are not the same.


Kevin Michaels January 5, 2012 10:02pm ET

Nothing is better than being in the great outdoors with lots of fresh air, personally I hate smoking indoors in a cigar lounge where I have to bear the stench of an improperly blended cigar.


Kevin Michaels January 5, 2012 10:04pm ET

Nothing is better than being in the great outdoors with lots of fresh air, personally I hate smoking indoors in a cigar lounge where I have to bear the stench of an improperly blended cigar.


Kevin Michaels January 5, 2012 10:05pm ET

Nothing is better than being in the great outdoors with lots of fresh air, personally I hate smoking indoors in a cigar lounge where I have to bear the stench of an improperly blended cigar.


Bob Michelson — Cape Coral, FL, US,  —  January 6, 2012 1:13am ET

One of the comments ended ..."Jeez, what is our once free country coming to?" I think it should be "What has become of our freedoms in our free country?" or better "What have we, the majority of right minded, intelligent, free-thinking and responsible people, allowed a few so called do-gooders to dictate to us". I resent in every way, shape and form being told when and where I can enjoy myself. Ok, so Comacho bowed out "honorably", but maybe they should have stood their ground. It's about time we all did that ... stand our ground and not knuckle under to the "do-gooders".


JOSH RITCHIE — MACON, IL, USA,  —  January 6, 2012 1:17am ET

I don't put anything past Dick Durbin. Look at the State of Illinois. They are the brokest and most corrupt state in all fifty. I think it would be more beneficial to teach our kids how to make there own educated choices. Parents need to spend more quality time with their kids and teach them right from wrong. There is always going to be bad influences in the childrens eyes. It is up to us to make sure we give them what they need to make the right choices. It's a shame these politicians cannot think rationally.


joseph bertoni — irwin, pennsylvania, united states,  —  January 6, 2012 2:18am ET

The stinking government always has their nose in your business.


LouCarlascio January 6, 2012 7:52pm ET

are these people for real when it comes to takeing tax money from the sale of cigars theres no problem and I think that everyone is smart enough to understand what smokeing (to much) does to you we can say the same with drinking, auto pollution (including goverment automobiles)and factories finially if the youth of today want to smoke they will and will find any way to get them .


LouCarlascio January 6, 2012 7:52pm ET

are these people for real when it comes to takeing tax money from the sale of cigars theres no problem and I think that everyone is smart enough to understand what smokeing (to much) does to you we can say the same with drinking, auto pollution (including goverment automobiles)and factories finially if the youth of today want to smoke they will and will find any way to get them .


Gary Schroeder — Gonzales, Texas , U. S. A. ,  —  January 7, 2012 3:54am ET

I just went online and looked in to buying some comachos just out of spite and support for their product. Hope I like'em.


Gary Schroeder — Gonzales, Texas , U. S. A. ,  —  January 7, 2012 4:01am ET

I just went online to look into buying some Camachos just out of spite and support their product, hope I like'em. Damn liberal pinkos, nothing better to focus on I guess. Gary A Schroeder, Gonzales, Tx.


Taylor Franklin January 8, 2012 7:42pm ET

Everyone climb on board the Fascist nanny-state express . . . YEEHAW!


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