Artisanal Charcoal to be Cuba's First Export to U.S.

January 11, 2017 12:01 PM

A special form of clean-burning charcoal used for pizza and bread ovens is the first legal export from Cuba to the U.S.

A U.S. company is buying 80 tons of the artisan charcoal made from an invasive woody plant called marabu.

The company owner is hopeful the Trump administration will allow this trade practice to continue.

“I do hope the new administration will look at this, at the other deals that have been accomplished, that can be accomplished, and if you believe in free trade and economic progress, this is exactly what we should be doing,” said Scott Gilbert, the CEO of Gilbert LLC.

The charcoal is produced by hundreds of worker-owned cooperatives across Cuba and has become an increasingly profitable export.

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