Fine cut tobacco saw a large decrease in the pandemic, as cross-border trade with Norway was restricted. This prevented Norwegian consumers from visiting and purchasing fine cut tobacco in Sweden, as they frequently did pre-pandemic.
Sales of cigars and cigarillos decreased in 2020 and 2021 as border restrictions also impact this category, with Norwegians unable to purchase these items abroad. However, the restrictions had a dual effect on this category, as it is also popular for Swedes to buy these products duty-free when they are travelling.
Scandinavian Tobacco Group (STG) maintained its undisputed leading position in cigarillos as well as in smoking tobacco in 2021. The player maintains the long-standing brands Escort and Tiedemanns in fine cut tobacco and enjoys strong customer loyalty to these brands.
Despite the long-term trend for fine cut tobacco in Sweden being clearly negative, 2022 retail volume sales are expected to grow because of a boost from the resumption of cross-border trade with Norway. Sweden tends to offer lower prices on these products than Norway, therefore attracting many Norwegian smokers to conduct shopping daytrips to Sweden.
E-commerce is set to see the most dynamic growth as a distribution channel for cigars, cigarillos and smoking tobacco over the forecast period. The pandemic has accelerated not only online grocery purchases (which benefits fine cut tobacco as this is typically sold in grocery retailers), but also those through specialist tobacco stores such as cigarrspecialisten.
Sales of cigars and cigarillos in the forecast period will be driven by frequent new product launches, even though this will not be sufficient to turn around the slowly dropping or stagnating sales trend. Manufacturers’ focus will turn ever more onto value sales and added benefits rather than volume sales.
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Cigars, Cigarillos and Smoking Tobacco
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