Every year Hunters & Frankau release an updated stamp that are applied to all Havana cigars to illustrate that they have passed UK quality inspection.
Every box of Cuban cigars that land on UK shores must be opened to allow a further layer of inspection to ensure only the best cigars reach UK shelves. This process would mean original seals from Cuba are broken so a new seal would need to be placed on the box.
Once cigars have passed inspection, boxes are re-sealed using a EMS seal to guarantee you are only buying the best quality.
EMS stands for English Market Selection and is a description that has been used in Cuba for over a century to identify the quality of cigars destined for the British market. All packs of Cuban cigars selected for sale in the UK now bear this stamp.
Since 1997, the colour of the stamp is updated each year to offer a fresh look to your cigars. This means it is common to find various different coloured stamps on the shelves of your local Havana Cigar Specialist, depending on when the cigars were originally checked by H&F quality control experts.
So next time you are in a cigar shop have a look at the EMS stamps on the boxes and see if you can spot any different designs.
To learn more about the EMS stamp and what it represents today within the UK market, check out more info at Hunters & Frankau’s website here.