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Serving Today’s Smokers

Led by the Gallagher family, Smoker Friendly continues the fight to sell tobacco legally and responsibly. By John Lofstock, Editor. While the federal government seems intent on eliminating tobacco products altogether, tobacco remains a legal product in the U.S. enjoyed by legal-aged adults exercising their right to smoke, dip or chew. The right to enjoy

B&M-Cigarillo-Sweets

Untipped Cigarillos

John Middleton’s Black & Mild is launching two premium untipped cigarillo products nationally: Classic and Sweets. Classic is for adult cigar smokers interested in a classic Black & Mild pipe tobacco taste, while Sweets is a more traditional cigarillo taste made from primarily air-cured tobaccos. Both products are available in five-packs and singles. During initial

smokeless-tobacco

Cornering the Smokeless Tobacco Market

Keeping sets fresh—allocating shelf space, rotating product, keeping tabs on expiration dates and weeding out slow sellers in favor of new items—is the key to maintaining strong sales. By John Lofstock, Editor. Convenience store operators are enjoying the growing popularity of smokeless tobacco products, but they are also being forced to keep a wary eye

Altadis

Commonwealth Brands, Altadis USA Announce Integration

Commonwealth Brands and Altadis USA have announced the integration of their sales and marketing units into a unified team. The unified team is expected to provide greater sales coverage and more comprehensive service to its customer. “This will put us in a stronger position to drive growth across our USA mass market portfolio that comprises

cigars

Cigar Sales Holding Strong

Flavored products and natural leaf wrappers remain popular with consumers despite increased taxation and looming FDA intervention. By Frank Seltzer, Contributing Editor. Machine-made or mass-market cigars are by far the largest segment of the cigar universe. While premium cigars get most of the notice in magazines and blogs, the reality is that most cigar smokers

Emphasizing Category Management

 By: John Lofstock, Editor. Convenience Store Decisions‘ annual Category Management Outlook issue is routinely one of my favorite issues of the year because it gives the CSD staff an opportunity not only to analyze the industry’s performance over the past 12 months, but to forecast the sales trends retailers can expect to see over the

Dean's Heavy Weight Cigars

Heavy Weights

Like all Dean’s cigars and pipe tobaccos, Dean’s new Heavy Weights cigars, a product of M & R Holdings, contain only the highest-quality tobacco. Heavy Weights are the same size as the company’s 2003 release—its 100mm Dean’s Large Cigars—containing slow-burning, air-cured burley filler and 100% homogenized tobacco wrapper. Both filter-tipped cigar brands come in nine

cigars, other tobacco products

Renewed Optimism for Cigars

Amid the chaos of legislation and taxation, convenience store retailers remain optimistic they can retain OTP customers and even pick up some new ones trading down from cigarettes. By: Joe Bush, Contributing Editor. Not much been predictable about the tobacco category over the past 18 months. Huge taxes increases have renewed questions about just how

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New White Grape Cigarillos

Swisher International has introduced a new white grape flavor to its lineup of Swisher Sweets Cigars. The white grape flavor offers customers a mild-sweet taste, smooth flavor and an excellent aroma. These new cigarillos are individually wrapped in the company’s sealed-fresh foil wrapping and come in a variety of packaging—Bonus Box 60s, 25-count impulse units

cigs

The Future of Cigarette Retailing

With graphic new warning labels destined for individual packages and higher tobacco prices, retailers are facing a harsh new reality. On November 10, 2010, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) unveiled 36 graphic warning label images, one of which will be selected to go on every cigarette package no later than Sept. 22, 2012.

Lighting the Way to Profitability

Lighters can be an afterthought. There are relatively few manufacturers, everyone merchandises them near the front counter, liability issues have cut down on cheap products and differentiation is only skin deep. But even given the limited number of companies supplying products, lighters produce an excellent margin—between 40% and 60%—and sales have been steady for the

Sweetening Cigar Sales

Small filtered cigarellos represent a real albeit temporary opportunity for convenience stores to rack up sales, so get going before the window of opportunity slams shut. These diminutive cigars have gained strong appeal among smokers laboring to afford cigarettes in the wake of multiple tobacco tax hikes. The price differential between filtered cigars and cigarettes

Mini Wine Flavor Cigarillos

Swisher International Inc. has combined one of its newest and most popular flavors with the convenient shape of mini cigarillos to make the new Swisher Sweets Mini Wine Cigarillos. These new, smaller cigars offer the quick smoke many customers prefer, and come individually wrapped with the company’s unique special sealed-fresh wrapper to ensure fresh, flavorful

Swisher International

Swisher International has added Peach, Mild and Mild Menthol packs to the Santa Fe Little Cigar line. The three new flavors, in addition to Santa Fe Original and Santa Fe Menthol, offer customers one of the widest selections of high-quality little cigars that are sold at every day low prices. Santa Fe Little Cigars are

Sweet Surprise

Swisher International introduces the newest addition to the family Swisher Sweets Grape Little Cigars. This mild, sweet, new little cigar offers high profits per ring and is bursting with grape taste and aroma. It’s the perfect little cigar to sell and for customers to enjoy. Available in 10-pack cartons and displays with 20 Little Cigars

Full-Flavor Enhancement

General Tobacco (GT) announced the launch of the new Vaquero Little Cigars 100’s box. The line extension is the latest addition to the GT catalog and will feature a variety of flavors to choose from including: Natural, Light, Vanilla, Menthol, Peach and Cherry. For More Information from General Tobacco 877-500-9595 www.generaltobacco.com  

Wawa’s Cigar Sales Flourish With Middleton Partnership

“John Middleton has some very strong sellers in our stores, but the new merchandiser they developed with us has been an overall improvement to the [cigar] category.” John Middleton Inc. has been operating in the Philadelphia area since 1856, beginning with a retail tobacco shop. More than a hundred years later, John Middleton divested its

TPE 2011 Expecting Strong Attendance

Building on the success of the Tobacco Plus Expo (TPE) 2010, the Tobacco Plus Expo slated for March 2-3 at the Las Vegas Convention Center is attracting a record level of early interest from both exhibitors and attendees. “A full 10 months out we already have commitments from the majority of last year’s exhibitors, as

Cigars and Papers

HBI International offers Juicy Bluntarillo Quad Wrapped Cigars, which are smaller than a blunt, but bigger than a cigarillo. The Bluntarillos have four wraps because the flavor of a cigar is mostly held in its wrapper. By using four, this cigar has four times the flavor. Plus some of the wraps can be peeled off

FDA Republishes June 22 Tobacco Regulations

The FDA Center for Tobacco Products has republished a rule, which becomes effective June 22, 2010, the National Association of Tobacco Outlets (NATO) reported. As of June 22 the rule will impose certain restrictions on the sale, distribution, advertising and marketing of cigarettes, rolling tobacco and smokeless tobacco. The regulations in this rule do not

Forecast Strong for Cigars

Amid all the chaos of legislation, regulation and taxation, it’s good to have tobacco category managers like Gate Petroleum’s Matt Hieb. Hieb’s approach to his chain’s market-leading cigar performance is calm and measured, driven by data, common sense and manufacturer promotions. In 225 locations throughout six southeastern states, Gate’s cigar offering exceeds the southeast market

Tobacco Companies Fight Display Ban In Britain

Britain’s three biggest tobacco companies are fighting for the right to display their products, asking for a judicial review of the Government’s upcoming ban on the display of cigarettes and other tobacco products in stores, Brand Republic reported. Britain’s Health Act 2009 requires all cigarettes, cigars, pipe and rolling tobacco products to be hidden from

Kansas Debates Higher Sin Taxes

The Kansas Senate Assessment and Taxation committee had a hearing Wednesday to hear all sides before ruling on the legislature’s proposed tax increases on cigarettes, liquor and fuel that would cover an estimated $400 million budget shortfall, the Kansas Reporter reported. Tom Palace, executive director of the Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association of Kansas,

Kretek Drops Cigar Lawsuit Against FDA

Kretek International Inc., importer and marketer of Djarum clove cigars has withdrawn its lawsuit against the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), regarding the distribution and sale of clove cigar products. In light of statements made by the FDA, Kretek in September of 2009 filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District

Opportunities Exist for Cigars

TOP PERFORMERS Altria Sales & Distribution (John Middleton) Swisher Swedish Match HONORABLE MENTIONS Altadis USA Republic Tobacco The SCHIP tobacco tax rates that hit in April 2009 are costing cigar smokers more, but sales continue to persevere. As of April, the federal taxes on large cigars rose from 20.719% of the wholesale price with a

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