Black cigar smokers had long faced exclusion from the broader cigar community. So they created their own.
— Curtis Bunn, NBC News
When America began its stay-at-home orders because of the coronavirus pandemic, Greg Willis found comfort by retreating to the deck of his Atlanta home to indulge in a cigar.
He said enjoying an Emperors Cut, a brand he and five friends founded three years ago, provided a sense of calm during trying days. What Willis quickly discovered was that he was among thousands of other cigar lovers of color across the country who called on their passion to create a sense of normalcy during anything but normal times.
While many say they had long been shut out of the industry, the owners of Emperors Cut and many of the dozens of other Black-owned cigar brands in the U.S. found that their emergence into a $9.4 billion cigar market has sustained as smokers cope with a confined way of life.
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Source – Black Smoke Miami. Available at http://blacksmokemia.com/