The 11 best selling cigarette brands in US contribute huge revenues to the US Treasury every year in the form of tobacco taxes and legal settlements. According to Euromonitor, about 263.4 billion sticks were sold in the U.S., accounting for $94.4 billion in revenue in 2016.
However, the industry faces strong regulations and restrictions due to its adverse health effects. Cigarette sales in the U.S. have almost halved since 1981, when 630 billion were smoked. Growing health concerns and increasing awareness about the ill-effects of smoking have reduced cigarette consumption worldwide. Cigarettes are addictive and can cause serious health hazards (lung cancer, heart disease, emphysema etc.) in smokers. The younger generation is the most vulnerable since they start smoking in their teens. Despite lower sales, smoking causes over 480,000 deaths per year and diseases in more than 16 million Americans, according to CDC.
The U.S. cigarette industry has made several changes in response to new regulations like completely removing terms such as ‘light’ and ‘mild’ on cigarette packets. In 2003, the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control also mandated displaying pictorial as well as textual warning messages on the cigarette packs to dissuade smokers from smoking. The industry also witnessed an increase in federal excise tax in 2009.
Over the years, the prices of cigarette have gone down as the production mechanism has improved. There are various other trends driving the cigarette market. For example, though cigarette sales have declined in the overall market, the sales of flavored cigars have continued to increase. Menthol cigarettes have continued to hold a constant market share.
Marketing and advertising have played a major role in driving cigarette sales and the 11 best selling cigarette brands in US, invest heavily in marketing to remain ahead of the competition. More than 70% of the cigarette market share has been consistently held by the top 14 brands. Marlboro, Newport, and Pall Mall have been the clear leaders over the last decade.
However, some things have not changed – cigarettes still kill one for every million smoked. It is true despite the fact that cigarette makers claim to use filters, low tars, and lights. But none of these can make smoking safer or better!
Starting on the next page, we have listed the 11 best selling cigarette brands in US using different sources and have ranked them based on their market share according to 2016 sales data. Philip Morris USA, a subsidiary of Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) and R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., owned by British American Tobacco PLC (ADR) (NYSE:BTI), are the leading cigarette players in the U.S. industry.
Head to the next page to begin the list! You might want to check out our list of 11 Top Selling Cigarettes In the World.