Reyes Family Plants First Honduran Tobacco Crop

May 12, 2010 | By Gregory Mottola
Reyes Family Plants First Honduran Tobacco Crop
Longtime Honduran tobacco skeptic Rolando Reyes Sr., left, and Enrique Diez holding tobacco seedlings in Danlí.

The Reyes family, known for its Puros Indios and Cuba Aliados brands of handmade cigars, is doing two things it has never done in its long history—using Honduran tobacco and growing it themselves.

"Back in the 1990s, my grandfather [Rolando Reyes Sr.] bought land in Danlí [Honduras]," said Carlos Diez, president of Miami's Reyes Family Cigars. "He's always been a land lover, so living off the land for sustenance was a natural thing for him, but he wouldn't grow tobacco. I had been bugging him for years to grow some, and finally about six or seven months ago he said he's willing to give it a shot."

Although the Reyes family has about 2,000 acres in Danlí, Honduras, the same region where they make their cigars by hand, only 50 acres have been planted with tobacco. (The senior Reyes has used the land over the years to grow vegetables and to raise all manner of livestock.)

The primary tobacco varietals the Reyes family is trying to cultivate are Criollo, Habano and San Victor, also referred to as San Vicente in the Dominican Republic.

For more on this story, see the current issue of Cigar Insider.