Craven A cigarettes

Craven “A” is a brand of cigarette which were made in Canada, Jamaica, Vietnam, and North Korea. The cigarettes exhibit the English-style flavor of a Virginia-tobacco dominant blend, with that plant’s attendant nutty sweetness. The cigarette was named after the third Earl of Craven in 1860.

Craven A’s were a favourite cigarette during World War II. In Vietnam, Craven A is one of most popular brands, especially in the southern part of the country.

Vietnam Cravel A cigarettes

Vietnam Cravel A cigarettes

The ‘plain’ version of the cigarette was unusual in that, instead of merely lacking a filter, there was at one end a cork tip in place of the paper.

The Craven A brand has in recent times been closely associated with a number of entertainment events in Canada. Amongst these has been the “Just for Laughs” Canadian Comedy Tour in March 1999.


 Vintage Craven A sign

The Craven A brand is owned by Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc (RBH), which also owns or otherwise controls a wide variety of cigarette brands.

Craven A was the favourite cigarette brand (which were specifically known for being corked-tipped at the time before cigarettes had filters) of Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, and according to his sister Miss Fatima Jinnah, as she mentions in her book “My Brother”, he was a heavy smoker who used to smoke fifty Craven A’s a day. In his last days when he got seriously ill and was at a sick leave in Quetta, Baluchistan, he was requested by his doctor, Col. Illahi Buksh not to smoke. As he reagained some health, Mr. Jinnah took permission from Mr. Buksh to smoke, being very fond of it. The doctor then allowed him one (1) cigarette a day but not to inhale. However, when he came the next day, he saw five cigarette butt ends in the ashtray and gave an inquiring look at Mr. Jinnah, who said with a smile, “Yes, Doctor, I smoked five . . . . . . But I didn’t inhale.” And he laughed, happy as a child.

Craven A is part of the RBH “premium brand strategy”, principally within the Canadian market; however, the brand has experienced “long-term declines in market share”, in part due to the elimination of all sponsorship activities in Canada in October 2003.

Craven “A” is Jamaica’s favourite brand of cigarette and a famous Jamaican artist Vybz Kartel mentions it in some of his songs such as “di way we roll”.

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