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Cigar Industry

Handmade Cigar Imports Continue Upward Trend

Nov 11, 2022 | By David Savona
Handmade Cigar Imports Continue Upward Trend

Imported handmade, premium cigars continue to pour into the United States, with the latest government figures showing continued growth. For the first eight months of 2022, ending in August, more than 307 million handmade cigars were shipped to the United States, an increase of 4.3 percent when compared to the same period in 2021, when 294 million cigars were shipped.

The number 300 million was once considered the benchmark for a good year in the cigar business; now it’s just a starting point.

Market leader Nicaragua continues to be red hot, shipping 167 million cigars through August, up 8.9 percent over the first eight months of 2021. Shipments from the Dominican Republic, the No. 2 producer, and Honduras, which ranks third, were relatively flat, at 84.6 million and 54.4 million, respectively, according to data from the Cigar Association of America.

In 2021, premium cigar shipments hit 456 million cigars, a number not seen since 1997. Should this pace of growth be maintained for the remainder of the year, shipments would amount to 475 million cigars, but four months of data remain.

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