Cuba: 25 Years Later

Cuba: 25 Years Later
A look at what has changed—and what has not—in Havana since 1992
The golden era of Cuban cigars was in full force in the fall of 1992. The end of the Soviet Union’s subsidies early that year had not yet severely affected the economy, and the tobacco industry still had plenty of raw materials, including gasoline and fertilizer, to grow fine tobacco. Production was stable, and the quality of Cuban cigars was outstanding—that fact is proven today by how great those 1990–1993 vintages have survived the test of time. But the glory days were numbered. The beginning of the “Special Period,” as the end of Soviet support is known in Cuba, triggered a cascade of shortages and hardships between 1992 and 1996 that affected every aspect of …
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