Tobacco Roundup: Harbingers of Trends to Come?

Angel Abcede, Senior Editor/Tobacco, CSP

Expanding ‘premium’

Trend: Taking the “premium” craft-beer and alcohol concept to the backbar.

Company: Scandinavian Tobacco Group

Headquarters: Tucker, Ga.

Revelation: Its “premium” shelf displays are gaining traction with retailers.

Products: The company plans to update its cigar and other tobacco product (OTP) portfolio in the coming months and reach out to tobacco users. At the NACS Show, the company also featured its Talon-branded cigars and pipe tobaccos, Cricket lighters and a spit-free OTP product called Oliver Twist.

Brand reintroductions

Trend: As consolidation occurs, brands are repackaged and returned to the market.

Company: U.S. Tobacco Cooperative and Premier Manufacturing

Headquarters: Raleigh, N.C.

Revelation: With its purchase of King Maker Marketing last year, U.S. Tobacco Cooperative and its consumer-products division, Premier Manufacturing, Chesterfield, Mo., folded in four value-priced cigarette brands: Ace, Gold Crest, Checkers and Hi-Val.

Products: At the NACS Show, the company featured repackaged versions of the Ace and Gold Crest brands. Both are now made in the United States and use flue-cured tobacco from the cooperative’s growers as the main ingredient.

New technology

Trend: Despite a complex regulatory environment, technology advances continue to enter the space.

Company: Space Jam Juice

Headquarters: San Clemente, Calif.

Revelation: The company is introducing a new vapor device, while at the same time announcing it will expand its potential reach from 4,000 to 10,000 c-stores.

Products: In addition to its established vaping devices and e-liquids, officials talked about a new vaping device called Byrd that will become available in the coming months.

The afterlife of LTOs

Trend: Successful limited-time-offers (LTOs) can return to the market with a packaging twist.

Company: Swisher International

Headquarters: Darien, Conn.

Revelation: Banana Smash cigarillos were one of Swisher’s most successful LTOs.

Products: Having received a Retailer Choice Best New Product Contest award from CSP, Banana Smash will return to the market in an Encore format. Jane Green (pictured), vice president of marketing for Swisher, accepted the award on the show floor.