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York, PA 17402
Phone: (717) 757-2807
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Bloom vs Mold
One of the more unnerving sights for cigar smokers, both those that are new to the leaf and those with years of experience is when they discover that some of their premium hand-mades have developed a whitish fuzzy substance.

Well, you may be facing a problem and you may not be.  It all depends on what exactly this substance on your cigars really is.  It may be two very different things.  Bloom or mold. 


 Bloom: Also known as plume (both terms are correct), bloom is a naturally occurring phenomenon.  A grayish or whitish fuzz that can appear on a well-aged cigar. It is not mold and is completely harmless. Bloom is a residue from the fermenting oils within the cigar and is indicative of proper storage conditions.
 It first appears on the surface of a cigar as tiny crystals and can eventually make the cigar look dusty. A more advanced bloom gives an opaque white look to the entire cigar.  In fact, you can sometimes shine a light on the cigars and the crystals will shimmer a bit as they reflect the light.

You can identify bloom when it appears: tiny white or gray spots, evenly spaced on the cigar, that easily brush off when gently wiped with your finger or a soft cloth.
  A sign of proper storage conditions, many smokers actually prefer a cigar with bloom. Cigars with advanced plume have a pleasant tobacco aroma…and some say it makes for a richer smoke. 

So what to do if you have bloom?  Nothing at all.  Bloom is completely harmless and should actually re-assure you that you are caring for your cigars properly.  If the sight puts you off, very lightly brush the bloom off with your finger.  It will not affect the flavor or bouquet of your cigar.
Mold: Mold is a fungus. It can appear on the surface of cigars when the storage conditions exceed proper humidity and temperature levels. Mold looks like blue/gray or black patches or clumps on the surface of the cigar. They are three dimensional and do not easily wipe off.  Typically mold occurs on the wrapper of a cigar, but can also occur on the foot and/or within the filler of a cigar.
Two other indicators of mold are damp cigars that do not burn well and produce a foul odor.

Mold is not good for cigars, mold spreads by producing spores and affected cigars should be promptly removed from the humidor to keep the mold from spreading to your other smokes.
This leads to the often asked question of; can you still smoke a cigar that had/has mold on it?  To be safe, no.  Some smokers will simply wipe the mold off and smoke them anyway.  You can try that, but it could be risky, especially not knowing what kind of mold it is.  Some varieties of mold can cause serious illness.

  The best medicine for warding of mold spores is to keep the humidity level in your humidor from getting too high.

  For more information on the proper environment for your cigars click here.
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