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The RAW Rebuttle: Josh Kesselman is Lighting Up and Firing Back

A Message from RAW

RAW® is an underdog success story. With your support, we have risen to be a global brand beloved by discriminating smokers. Under the vision of our founder Josh Kesselman, RAW® is now one of the global leaders in rolling papers and smoking innovations.

RAW is an independent company run by a tight-knit team, whose members truly love what they do. We are very proud of our reputation for quality products, the positive standing we have established in the industry, and the love our customers share for the RAW® brand and its values.

You may have heard some hurtful and inaccurate rumors floating around out there about RAW. We deeply regret any uncertainty they have created for our community of supporters – and want to take this opportunity to clarify some aspects of our business:

  • RAW® Organic Hemp rolling paper booklets are made in Benimarfull, a quaint village in the Alicante Province of Spain (see the location on Google Maps: Benimarfull)

  • Our paper is milled at the finest mills in the South of France, and the milled paper rolls are sent to Benimarfull, Spain where they go through a special process to be made into either the beautiful sheets of RAW in your booklet or finished and sent onwards to be rolled into a cone.

  • All RAW® Organic Hemp papers are indeed made with true unbleached certified organic hemp

  • As an independently owned company, RAW’s philanthropic efforts of over a decade (now called RAW Giving) have contributed more than $2.5 million in direct cash contributions, plus in-kind contributions of $186,174 to a wide variety of charities. RAW’s in-kind gifts helped the charities raise an additional $590,661 for themselves. These top charities received more than $20,000 each for a total of $2.3 million:

    • Water is Life International

    • Senai International

    • Wine To Water

    • Boy’s Hope Girl’s Hope

    • Friends of Independent Schools and Better Education

    • YMCA

    • Home Fur Good

    • Gompers Habilitation Center

    • Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence

    • Trees For The Future

    • Global Development Group

    • Central Arizona Shelter Services

    • Arizona Opera

    • Americares General Aide and Relief Fund

    • PSA Behavioral Health Agency


    • East Bay Sanctuary Covenant

  • The name we previously used for our giving efforts may have created the impression that we ourselves were a charity. We are not a charity. Charities raise money by requesting donations. RAW does not. Instead, RAW gives portions of its profits to provide financial support to many charities and other causes central to the values of our brand. In other cases, we provide fundraising opportunities for nonprofits who receive donations directly from our audience. We have updated how we communicate about RAW Giving and continue to be proud of its many achievements.

Sadly, like many other successful companies, RAW is involved in litigation, more than we would like, in order to preserve the value of our company and products. Recently a case that has been ongoing for 7 years resulted in some updates for RAW. The good news is the Jury awarded us $979,620.00 for a competitor’s willful infringement of RAW trade dress and $40,000 statutory damages for willful infringement of RAW copyright. With this victory, RAW has a stronger brand than before. As part of this case, we conceded to an Agreed Order requiring certain changes on some of our packaging and marketing messages. We are sorry for any confusion the litigation outcome has created and are relieved that the recent lawsuit does not negatively affect the sale of any of our products already in the market. Our valued customers and stores who stock RAW’s products will continue to sell them and run their businesses just as before.

We have been innovating and addressing changes to RAW® packaging for many years. This is

a common practice and we are updating them again as we speak to better illustrate our brand

and product. Rest assured, all RAW® products we sell continue to meet our highest quality

standards. None of this diminishes the impeccable quality of our papers nor the organic

certification of the hemp we have used for a long time.

Thank you for your love and support of RAW and our products as we continue to strive for the

perfect experience for our customers. We all get higher together!


The RAW® Team

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