Sept. 29, 2013 — Historically, hand-rolling cigarettes was an economical alternative to purchasing commercial packs. But a new product has taken the ritual to a luxurious counterpoint and is attracting self-described ballers within the hip-hop community as well as other, ahem, high rollers.
“There is very little research regarding inhaling gold particles,” the Shine Papers site acknowledged, citing a Korean study from May 2011 in which rats were subjected to inhaling gold nanoparticles for six hours a day, five days a week, for 90 days in “a whole-body inhalation chamber.”
“It’s definitely not an everyday product because of the price point,” said Shine Papers owner Dave D., who declined to provide a last name. “But the people who feel like they are that person are showing a lot of support for it and returning to reorder.”
Likewise, tweets and Instagram photos tagging Shine Papers indicate that not many customers are using the product to smoke St. John’s wort or yerba.
Shine Papers are 24K rolling papers combining edible gold leaf with a slow-burning interior paper. Prices range from $55 to $60 for a pack of 12, depending upon whether they are purchased directly from the company or on Amazon.com.
ABC News requests for comment from the Food and Drug Administration, which has yet to review the papers, did not receive an immediate response.
Dave D., who operates his business out of offices in Charleston, S.C., and Las Vegas, told ABC News that he conceived of the idea for Shine Papers at the end of March 2013 with a friend at London Cut Cigars, which sells a $200 Dominican cigar wrapped in Connecticut Shade paper and 24K edible gold leaf.
But is smoking 24K gold rolling papers safe?
“We moved quickly to figure out the process, prototyping it and preselling,” he said, adding that production takes place overseas.
The 24K product is intended to be used with legal smoking herbs, says manufacturer.