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I freeze CC.  I am an engineer so I am anal.  I know the concept of thermal shock, but have no idea if it applies to organic material like tobacco ( I know it applies to human flesh - LOL).  Thus I do the refer to freezer to refer to room temp method.  My freezer temp is -12 F and I leave the sticks in there for like 100 hours.  They are in the refer (at 37 F) 24 hours prior to freeze and 24 hours after freeze, then 24 hours at room temp before humidor.  The sticks are frozen in the packaging they arrive in, they are just in a freezer bag for the process.  If you put in a freezer bag they will not dry out in the refer they just change temperature (and yes you want to avoid condensation).  I have taken cabinets that have gone through this process an placed in Tuppador that showed 57 RH and subsequently rose to 65 RH with no other humidity source other than the cigars (and the package).  I watch to see RH drop to around 62 RH then drop a 65 Boveda pack in.

I store cigars naked if they come in Tubes (keep the tubes though) after the deep freeze.

I do not freeze NC sticks.  Most NC sticks are in celo so that will protect your other cigars if you have a beetle.  The only sticks I get that have no celo are Oliva, perhaps I should freeze those, but I am told most NC producers freeze so I take my chances I guess.

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Everything that I fly out of Cuba with goes through the freezer.  Everything that is gifted to me (anywhere) goes through the freezer.  All NC, go through the freezer. 

Perhaps.  Tale of the tape is that I haven't seen a live beetle in a box of Cuban cigars since around 2006.  150,000 + boxes looked at and counting 

I freeze as well. Take box and wrap in the bubble wrap you receive it in. Throw in a freezer bag. Put directly in freezer for a few days. Take it out and leave on counter for a few hours. Into humidor

52 minutes ago, Ender1553 said:

I've also been told if you have eggs, they WILL hatch regardless of temp. They just prefer warmer so will hatch sooner.

They'll generally hatch within 9 mo, so the thing to do would be quarantine for 12 mo before mixing with the rest of your stock (if you don't want to freeze).

didn't know that, found this "The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports its entire growth cycle will occur, slowed but not stopped, at temperatures above 65 deg. F, assuming the humidity is above 40 percent."  i set mine to 65 but they tend to stay around 64, might tick that down to 64 or 63 just to be safe

  

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3 hours ago, Ender1553 said:

I've also been told if you have eggs, they WILL hatch regardless of temp. They just prefer warmer so will hatch sooner.

The famous Imai and Harada paper has something to say about this.  They found that all eggs became nonviable after 6 weeks when temperatures were kept below 18C.

On the other hand, they found >80% hatched within 4 weeks at 20C.

The reasonable inference here is that infestations that occur in our humidors are from eggs that are "outlier eggs" that don't hatch in the normally short time frame (4 weeks) after they are laid by the adult.

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10 minutes ago, TheGipper said:

They found that all eggs became nonviable after 6 weeks when temperatures were kept below 18C.

Excellent news as my storage room is at 14C and will probably not go over 18C until next year, so all my cigars will be "frozen" with no effort on my part.

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9 hours ago, El Presidente said:
  • Everything that I fly out of Cuba with goes through the freezer. 
  • Everything that is gifted to me (anywhere) goes through the freezer. 
  • All NC, go through the freezer. 

This

8 hours ago, mprach024 said:

It’s about humidity, often times shipped cigars can come in over humidified.  The fridge dries them out.  I assume you know what happens to water when it freezes, if you buy a high end box or expensive box of Cohiba, at high humidity straight into a flash freeze at -10 you run a risk of splitting.  The fridge dries them, and gradually brings them down and back up to temp.  Could be malarkey and unnecessary.  It’s also no charge, and zero hassle, so why not be safe?

Putting boxes in the fridge before the freezer accustoms the beetles/eggs to the lower temperatures.  It increases their survival rate in the freezer, forcing you to extend freeze time by days.

4 hours ago, xsquid said:

I freeze CC.  I am an engineer so I am anal.  I know the concept of thermal shock, but have no idea if it applies to organic material like tobacco ( I know it applies to human flesh - LOL).  Thus I do the refer to freezer to refer to room temp method.  My freezer temp is -12 F and I leave the sticks in there for like 100 hours.  They are in the refer (at 37 F) 24 hours prior to freeze and 24 hours after freeze, then 24 hours at room temp before humidor.  The sticks are frozen in the packaging they arrive in, they are just in a freezer bag for the process.  If you put in a freezer bag they will not dry out in the refer they just change temperature (and yes you want to avoid condensation).  I have taken cabinets that have gone through this process an placed in Tuppador that showed 57 RH and subsequently rose to 65 RH with no other humidity source other than the cigars (and the package).  I watch to see RH drop to around 62 RH then drop a 65 Boveda pack in.

I store cigars naked if they come in Tubes (keep the tubes though) after the deep freeze.

I do not freeze NC sticks.  Most NC sticks are in celo so that will protect your other cigars if you have a beetle.  The only sticks I get that have no celo are Oliva, perhaps I should freeze those, but I am told most NC producers freeze so I take my chances I guess.

Human bodies are ~70% water, cigars are ~13% water, freezing doesn’t affect them in the same way.  Cello WON’T stop beetles, they’ll bite right through it.  I’ve seen it.  Not sure if Boxes will stop them either, they can probably burrow through soft wood or escape through tight spaces.

For what it’s worth, I freeze everything other than FOH boxes.  Box goes directly into the freezer for a week, then counter for half an hour, then into humidor.  If every exported cigar is frozen, then freezing won’t change the flavor in any way, it’s already been frozen before!

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10 hours ago, El Presidente said:

Perhaps. 

Tale of the tape is that I haven't seen a live beetle in a box of Cuban cigars since around 2006.  150,000 + boxes looked at and counting :D

How many boxes have you had that arrive with holes and what is your process for those?

Cheers! ? 

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Fridge. Freezer. Fridge. Counter. Humidor. Everything as a routine with areas set aside in the fridge and freezer for this purpose. It has been built as a habit and works well as all part of the process. Sometimes life happens and they stay in the freezer 3-5 days, no issues. Beauty sticks. 

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15 hours ago, Ender1553 said:

I don't order NCs very often and usually don't freeze those. I do freeze all my CCs though. I generally prefer at least 1 day in the fridge post as i'm in a slightly higher humidity environment and want to avoid condensation.

I don't see a point in freezing NCs unless you're worried about the point of purchase. There's fumigation throughout the lifecycle of the cigar right up to and including the time it sits in the aging room. On top of that the cigars are frozen.

What that said - cellophane isn't protection against beetles in my experience. Beetles will eat through cellophane no problem.

 

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Couple more comments.  Nick Perdomo states that cello protects against beetles.  Based on stuff I read lately and comments here that prompted me to look deeper, that is likely not the case.  The little buggers can go through cardboard and even wood so celo is nothing.  Now a beetle in your humidor is a sign damage has already taken place.  The adults do not eat (they can chew) and if they chew through the celo it is to lay eggs and repeat the life cycle.  The larva do the damage and you can't see them as they are inside the cigar.  I did read that the insects can acclimate to cold; however, I have seen documents (I think it is even posted on FOH someplace) that 100% mortality happens at -20 C (-4 F for the non metric Yanks like me) and it takes just an hour for all life stages to croak.  Now they may acclimate to cold but even 0 C will wipe them out if kept there for a day.  I do 4 days at -12 F ( -24.4 C), so pardon the pun, I do over-kill.  I am a big fan of margin ?.  Margin is an engineer's friend.  I think room temp to freezer is likely OK but not zero risk (opinion).  I think gradual acclimation lowers risk, by I cannot imagine the thermal expansion/contraction would be much different between the two methods.  So bottom line is do what works for you.  Likely there is a wide range of correct methods but for 100% kill rate you need to watch both temp and duration at temp.

 

Love the internet - you can get lots of opinions but few answers ?

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I always freeze everything from anywhere, even though I do have confidence that Cuba freezes their stock upon export.  There's still many stops in the chain of custody before those cigars reach my front door.  The transit from Cuba to the distributor, ( seems like many regional HSA distros open boxes to inspect/place health warning stickers before resealing with their own seals IE Tabacalera, H & F) & finally...the retailer.  What about the months/years these cigars spend in a warehouse before they are sold?  These insects can get into a box at any point in the chain of custody.  There's also wood mites and book lice to consider (they may not destroy cigars, but who wants ANY bugs in their cigar boxes?!)  I don't think it's a  very common occurrence, but I do share the attitude of others who posted here, who have seen these little bastards in action before: better safe than sorry!  To each their own I suppose...

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5 hours ago, Cigar Salute said:

I always freeze everything from anywhere, even though I do have confidence that Cuba freezes their stock upon export.  There's still many stops in the chain of custody before those cigars reach my front door.  The transit from Cuba to the distributor, ( seems like many regional HSA distros open boxes to inspect/place health warning stickers before resealing with their own seals IE Tabacalera, H & F) & finally...the retailer.  What about the months/years these cigars spend in a warehouse before they are sold?  These insects can get into a box at any point in the chain of custody.  There's also wood mites and book lice to consider (they may not destroy cigars, but who wants ANY bugs in their cigar boxes?!)  I don't think it's a  very common occurrence, but I do share the attitude of others who posted here, who have seen these little bastards in action before: better safe than sorry!  To each their own I suppose...

Cuba freezes all boxes, not just for export.  Though they share space with customs and conditions are poor. 

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I freeze every single thing that goes in the cabinet, period. Cheap insurance.

 

My freezer is at roughly -25°C, and I give everything one day or so in the fridge, 3 days in the freezer (should be enough for the full stick to reach the 1 hour kill time, plus an extra day for paranoia), one more day or so in the fridge, and one day or so at ambient temp before it goes on the cabinet.

 

I just instituted a new policy of also freezing the boxes that don't fit in freezer bags separately after finding a dead beetle in one of them. Could be eggs anywhere.

 

I wish I could find freezer bags that fit the bigger boxes (#2s, DC, 50 cabs, etc).

 

 

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My one and only beetle outbreak was with a box brought back from Cuba. Had to freeze my entire collection as a precaution and anything I bring back in future will be frozen as soon as I return home.

I don't think it's worth it for anything supplied by international distributors, HSA's export freezers seem to be doing their job.

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2 hours ago, PhilB said:

I freeze every single thing that goes in the cabinet, period. Cheap insurance.

 

My freezer is at roughly -25°C, and I give everything one day or so in the fridge, 3 days in the freezer (should be enough for the full stick to reach the 1 hour kill time, plus an extra day for paranoia), one more day or so in the fridge, and one day or so at ambient temp before it goes on the cabinet.

 

I just instituted a new policy of also freezing the boxes that don't fit in freezer bags separately after finding a dead beetle in one of them. Could be eggs anywhere.

 

I wish I could find freezer bags that fit the bigger boxes (#2s, DC, 50 cabs, etc).

 

 

I use two, one over each end, and duct tape them sealed together around the overlap.  Out of the freezer it pulls right off.  Let the it warm and you can even use it again.  

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I use two, one over each end, and duct tape them sealed together around the overlap.  Out of the freezer it pulls right off.  Let the it warm and you can even use it again.  
Smart. I'll give that a try next time. I double bag and get the air out as much as I can with straws, so this would be quadruple-bagging, but with careful juggling of the tape, should work.
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Just now, PhilB said:
3 minutes ago, mprach024 said:
I use two, one over each end, and duct tape them sealed together around the overlap.  Out of the freezer it pulls right off.  Let the it warm and you can even use it again.  

Smart. I'll give that a try next time. I double bag and get the air out as much as I can with straws, so this would be quadruple-bagging, but with careful juggling of the tape, should work.

I just fold the bags around the box, sealing as I go, seems to get most of the air out and haven’t had any condensation except one time when I didn’t tape properly (was in a hurry) and the box had some moisture but sticks were fine.  After that I just ensure the tape is on properly by going slow as I fold the bags around the boxes and never had another issue.  

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14 minutes ago, PhilB said:
16 minutes ago, mprach024 said:
I use two, one over each end, and duct tape them sealed together around the overlap.  Out of the freezer it pulls right off.  Let the it warm and you can even use it again.  

Smart. I'll give that a try next time. I double bag and get the air out as much as I can with straws, so this would be quadruple-bagging, but with careful juggling of the tape, should work.

boveda makes those big humidor bags too, or maybe an oven bag would work

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On 11/15/2020 at 12:58 PM, LLC said:
Ziplock has a 13x15 inch freezer bag.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Haven't seen them here in Canada...

 

On 11/15/2020 at 12:58 PM, LLC said:
Ziplock has a 13x15 inch freezer bag.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Interesting, it's listed on the Ziploc Canada website.

https://ziploc.ca/en/Products/Bags/Freezer/Freezer-Bags-Two-Gallon

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Haven't seen them here in Canada...

Just checked and they are available on Amazon.ca. and I know some stores have them because my wife has picked them up for me in the past.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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I freeze all I bring back from Cuba, and anything I don't buy from A PCC authorized retailer. If it comes from a grey market retailer, I don't know the chain of custody, so I there for freeze it. I rarely purchase anything from those sources unless it's something that PCC doesn't carry.

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