Future Blenders

Log in

SmokingPipes.com Updates

Watch for Updates Twice a Week

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

jipper

Lurker
Mar 16, 2021
18
28
53
Sweden
Jeremy isn't old by any means but yes, they are, as a group, starting to age out. Greg Pease is up in years, Per Jensen was let go by Mac Baren's and Mike McNiel retired. I don't think we are running low on blenders. There's so many guys looking at so few positions it shouldn't be a problem.
Also must remember that Joe Langford, of Seattle pipe Club blends, recently passed.
 
  • Like
Reactions: kcghost

Puffaluffaguss

Part of the Furniture Now
Jul 30, 2021
689
2,182
32
The City Different
The reason Taxation/Regulations will be the end of our beloved hobby and blends is because, the same reason they are legalizing cannabis in most states. It's all about the Benjamin's Baby, if you can tax it, tax it. If you can over tax, over tax, and so on. But just like cannabis, people will grow it themselves and still smoke, just not as open as we are now even though it's nothing like it once was, we can still produce, buy, consume all our lovely tobacco, untill we can't.
 
  • Like
Reactions: BriarsAndBottles

Servant King

Lifer
Nov 27, 2020
4,336
24,020
39
Frazier Park, CA
www.thechembow.com
I think we all know where our pastime is headed. True, no one may be able to confidently discern a specific timetable, but a more nebulous concept of "the end" (be it due to lack of availability or being cost prohibitive) is pretty much a foregone conclusion.

Yes, excessive regulation is chiefly to blame, but let's not forget that this is what you get when you make your own countries and your own rules. It always backfires. Let's also not forget that human brain capacity has been on the wane for a number of years now. I look around me and I see a race of lifeforms, virtually all of which have been assimilated into the iPhone Borg cube. In other words, complete dependents, who cannot even perform the most basic functions of life anymore without an app telling them how to do it. If people can't even locate their own bathroom without GPS telling them how to get there, how the hell is anyone (assuming that there is even pipe tobacco anymore in the first place) going to be able to blend pipe tobacco competently? To say nothing of providing their own food, clothing and shelter, the most basic necessities of life.

To this day, I am equally shocked and grateful that California has not joined the ranks of the handful of other states that have banned online tobacco sales. I plan on taking advantage of this lapse in Machiavellianism for as long as it is provided to me, and as long as the US dollar still has a shred of purchasing power remaining. Bitching and complaining is neither fun nor productive, and lobbying the government even less so on both counts. What else can I do but stock up while I can, and enjoy it while I can?

In the infallible words of Bill Hicks, "Sleep tight!"
 
I think that the number one thing preventing people from going into blending as a career is that it would be the stupidest decision one could make. It would be like investing in Blockbuster Videos in 1996. Sure, we may have a lot of pipe smokers still, but the viability of keeping the hobby alive for 20-30 more years is like sinking your entire investment portfolio into Kinkos.

Sure, sure... we can blame politicians, taxes, regulations... and as a retired jeweler, I have to laugh. Tobacco blenders think they are regulated... try buying and selling gemstones and precious metals. After 9-11, Homeland Security first threw down a labyrinth of regulations on jewelers. Not a sliver of gold is ever unaccounted for. And, now we all take a loss at both buying and selling metals. I'm not saying that taxes and regulations aren't difficult, I just mean that they could be as Kafkaesque as trading diamonds across borders.

Ultimately, we all know that one day soon, tobacco will just not be a thing. Once cigarettes finally fold up and move on down the road, that will pretty much kill off all tobacco.

At the beach, the guy in front of me at the gas station asked for a pack of cigarettes, and the 30something behind the register said that in his two years of working there, this was his first cigarette sale. Let that sink in. I can't even recall the last time a cigarette smoker sat down next to me as I smoked at the mall, or any of the other stores where I have to wait on my wife. I am actually having a hard time remembering when I last saw someone smoke a cigarette.
 

Grangerous

Lifer
Dec 8, 2020
3,278
13,229
East Coast USA
Just a few short years ago I decided that I should step up my game and I bought enough Granger in the now extinct BIG cans to last me.

When I did so, I rationalized that it’s never going to be any less expensive or readily available.

So, what happened?

Shortly after satisfying my cellar, they made the large cans extinct and started selling tiny 7 ounce cans for about the price I’d paid for the 12 ounce cans.

If I duplicated my cellar today, I’d need to purchase 60 of those little suckers to obtain the same amount.

Moral: It was a wise decision and saved me a bundle. The gap will only continue to broaden, as will the smile on my face.
 

geoffs

Starting to Get Obsessed
Sep 21, 2022
183
681
Ontario
with pipe tobacco depending on cigarette and chew sales to keep the market feasible for growers to produce more tobacco, it may not be much longer.
This is a really good point. I'd be curious to know what percentage of tobacco sourced from particular farms is ultimately destined for pipes versus cigarettes and chew. The combustible cigarette market is declining fast, driven by cheap unregulated vapes. How much pipe tobacco production is at risk, and which blenders are most exposed? Might make sense, for example, for a C&D or Macbaren to buy out farms to ensure a steady supply of tobacco. Just means that the industry will become more consolidated and it will be that much harder for new blending houses to be created. Fascinating case study unraveling before our eyes.
 

hoipolloiglasgow

Can't Leave
Oct 14, 2023
389
1,581
United States
Plenty of people still do smoke cigarettes though and probably will continue to do so. And as to government, hopefully they will learn that it is better to get smaller taxes off of many than increased taxes off of far less.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Puffaluffaguss

Servant King

Lifer
Nov 27, 2020
4,336
24,020
39
Frazier Park, CA
www.thechembow.com
Plenty of people still do smoke cigarettes though and probably will continue to do so. And as to government, hopefully they will learn that it is better to get smaller taxes off of many than increased taxes off of far less.
The word "government" does not belong so close to the word "learn." Just my 3.5 cents (have to up it because 1.5 of that is gov't tax).

With this in mind, perhaps the thread should be renamed to "Future Blunders."
 

Lees65GTO

Starting to Get Obsessed
Nov 29, 2022
270
336
79
Texas
Just a few short years ago I decided that I should step up my game and I bought enough Granger in the now extinct BIG cans to last me.

When I did so, I rationalized that it’s never going to be any less expensive or readily available.

So, what happened?

Shortly after satisfying my cellar, they made the large cans extinct and started selling tiny 7 ounce cans for about the price I’d paid for the 12 ounce cans.

If I duplicated my cellar today, I’d need to purchase 60 of those little suckers to obtain the same amount.

Moral: It was a wise decision and saved me a bundle. The gap will only continue to broaden, as will the smile on my face.
Ditto on purchasing quantities years ago, when they were a lot lower in cost plus we were able to purchase and stock up on blends no longer available, Esoterica Stonehaven, McClelland 5100 and 2015 to name a couple.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Grangerous

K.E. Powell

Part of the Furniture Now
Aug 20, 2022
525
1,904
37
West Virginia
I know no one enjoys taxes, but as far as taxes go, taxes on luxury goods are about the least pernicious kind. I need my income, and I need my groceries. I don't need my pipe tobacco, loath as I am not having access to it.

I believe pipe tobacco will continue to do what it has been doing for awhile now: marketing itself as a luxury good akin to cigars. It is a niche product. So, the number of blenders will likely match the demand for them, which is to say, they will decrease in number barring some major unforeseen event.

So, I will just slowly stock up. It will be around for a good while yet, but not at these prices forever. Thankfully, a bowl or two a day is all I want, and I could do with less if need be. Wanting less is always a surer path to happiness than accumulating more.