High-Grade Jamaican Leaf lights up industry with US$175k investment Loop Jamaica

Black Immigrant Daily News

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News Loop News

High-Grade Jamaican Leaf is a new player in the local tobacco market, and the company is seeking to cash in globally on the growing preference for hand-rolled or handmade cigarettes.

Handmade cigarettes are relatively less expensive compared to Factory-made (FM) cigarettes, and this trend has been driving the demand for Roll-Your-Own (RYO) tobacco products across the world.

That is why the principals of the company, siblings Brandon Cargill and Krystal Cargill, have invested over US$175,000 in developing a distinctly Jamaican brand.

“High-Grade Jamaican Leaf only uses the finest hand-selected premium tobacco that is packaged in Jamaica. Our leaf is dark brown and produces a very intense smooth flavour, one of the only tobacco brands that have a wide range product line,” Brandon said.

“We currently do not offer any marijuana strains. Just tobacco products and non-tobacco accessories,” Cargill said.

Some of the product lines include tobacco wraps, honey leaf cones, doob tubes, metal rolling trays, pocket ashtrays and the brand’s signature High-Grade Jamaican Leaf Pre-Crushed Grabba.

“Our products are amazing,” an effervescent Brandon said.

The product is distributed currently throughout the Caribbean and United States. The company currently employs 10 persons with planned expansion for 2023.

“We currently have 10 in-house staff members with planned expansion for 2023. We employ the best personnel in the market, source fine quality tobacco, choose reputable business partners and serve the best customers out there,” he said.

Jobs in the expansion operation will range from entry-level positions in production, sales, and distribution to upper-level management positions in processing, manufacturing, and supply channel logistics.

“We actively work to enrich local Jamaican communities by providing good services, jobs, and foreign exchange through the roll-your-own (RYO) market,” Brandon said.

Cannabis is an industry with a growing user base as states and countries move to legalise, particularly for medical needs. But it’s also becoming increasingly competitive to operate in, and consolidation is beginning to take shape.

“Our market-share aim for the next two years is three per cent and continuing to scale up operations to increase opportunities for greater profitability and expand our footprint in the roll-your-own market by continuous improvement for product innovation, building and solidifying customer loyalty, deploying effective advertising, and pricing products efficiently for customers. We could not be more passionate about this company and are dedicated to doing everything the right way,” stated Krystal.

“It is extremely important to us to treat cannabis with the reverence it deserves.”

Krystal believes that brand awareness is the biggest challenge facing High-Grade Jamaican Leaf to this end, the company is currently working with local talent in Jamaica to build recognizability in the marketplace.

“We are trying to be market leaders in everything we do from our packaging to our marketing strategies. I believe the industry needs to move beyond simplistic branding strategies like the leaf and that companies should see themselves as lifestyle brands and not simply tobacco products, and that’s what we are at High-Grade Jamaican Leaf, a lifestyle brand,” Cargill said.

Cargill’s own personal experiences informed his decision to get involved in the industry.

“High-Grade Jamaican Leaf was born from my earlier experience with smoking cigars and strong interest in the rich history behind tobacco rooted in Jamaican culture. I quickly took a liking to cigars but noticed there was a lack of quality when it came to Roll Your Own tobacco and tobacco paired with cannabis,” he said.

He observed that most RYO tobacco companies used a low-quality leaf that offered a less-than-stellar experience. He moved quickly to remedy this problem.

“High-Grade Jamaican Leaf was created to consistently provide premium tobacco and tobacco products by using hand-selected high-quality dark tobacco for a noticeable, different premium user experience,” he concluded.


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