Back in 1861, when David Swisher was driving his wagon team around the Midwest hauling along his mobile convenience store, accepting a small cigar company in settlement of a bad debt probably seemed no big deal. Little did he know that one day a future King Of England would be smoking his Swisher cigars and that the company would grow to become one of the world’s biggest producers of cigars.
The Spirit Of Enterprise
That “get up and go” factor that had David loading his wagons to take the luxuries and essentials from the East out to the folks in the ever growing new settlements in the Midwest obviously stood him in good stead when it came to his venture into cigar making. Within 34 years, his tobacco sideline employed more than a thousand people who made around 300,000 cigars per day. That 1861 company is now called Swisher International, Inc. and they produce about 1 in 3 of the cigars sold today in the United States; they are also the USA’s largest exporter of cigars.
Keeping Ahead Of The Field
Swishers did not concentrate on the more exotic aspects of blending tobacco leaves into hand rolled masterpieces; they were among the leading innovators in the area of automating the mechanical manufacture of cigars. However, they never lost sight of a major reason why some people prefer cigars over cigarettes and that is taste. Generally cigarette smokers inhale the smoke into their lungs to get a quick “hit” of nicotine in the blood and, hence, their brains. The cigar smoker will savor the taste of the smoke in the mouth and its aroma in the air. Swisher’s famous King Edward cigars are all natural, blended tobacco but machine made to literally give a taste “fit for a king”.
They first introduced their, now famous, “Sweet” brand name in 1958; smoking in general was beginning to get a bad press and restrictions were starting to be introduced. Most of the anti-smoking action centered on cigarettes and cigars were thought to be “less harmful”. Both filter and menthol cigarettes had already appeared but the cigarette makers were prohibited from introducing other flavors. A restriction that did not apply to the Swisher Sweet flavored cigars (which were also available with filters). The range grew to include Swisher Sweet Little Cigars in 1985; this took advantage of the tax laws in many states that not only levy lower taxes on cigars but even lower tax on small size or little cigars. Since Swisher Sweet Little Cigars come in pocket sized packs they are also an ideal choice for a smoker caught in a smoke-free zone and wanting to go outside for a “quick smoke”.