The first-ever Tobacconists’ Association of America, Ltd (TAA) exclusive from Diesel and Forged Cigar Co. has started at arriving at retailers.
It’s called the Diesel Disciple, a 7 x 38 lancero that uses a Mexican San Andrés wrapper and an Ecuadorian Sumatra binder. The filler is made up entirely of habano tobaccos grown in Estelí, Nicaragua. Like the rest of the Diesel line, it is being made Tabacalera AJ Fernandez Cigars de Nicaragua S.A.
Its MSRP is set at $8.99 per cigar and the Disciple is offered in boxes of 10.
While this is the first TAA release from Diesel and Forged, it’s hardly the first from the company that owns the brand. Earlier this year, Scandinavian Tobacco Group, which owns Forged, announced that it was splitting General’s portfolio of brands in two companies: General and Forged Cigar Co. Over the years, General has released a number of TAA exclusives with its other brands like CAO.
The TAA is a fairly small group of some of the country’s top tobacconists, about 80 retailers as well as 40 or so manufacturers. The association gathers annually to discuss issues facing the industry and retailers, as well as to have its annual trade show, a unique event that works on a group buying format in order to secure exclusive deals for these generally high-volume merchants.
During the event, the organization holds two selling events, one known as the Dream Machine where the retailers collectively order to secure larger discounts, while the other is a more traditional trade show. Typically, around a dozen manufacturers release new exclusive cigars for the retail members of the organization under the TAA Exclusive Series Program banner. Those manufacturers agree to give a portion of the proceeds to the organization, usually around 50 cents per cigar.
The TAA hosted a virtual meeting in March and plans on having an in-person event at Casa de Campo, Dominican Republic this October.