Benson & Hedges Cigarettes
Richard Benson and William Hedges founded Benson & Hedges Ltd. in 1873 in Canada. In 1885 William Hedges' son, Alfred, took over the business. He became sole proprietor when Richard Benson retired from the business that same year. Alfred moved the company to London at that time. Alfred Hedges was also active in politics and served as Justice of the Peace in Kent. Alfred expanded his company and opened branches in the United States in early 1900.
Benson & Hedges is now owned by three major tobacco companies: British American Tobacco, Philip Morris International and Japan Tobacco. Philip Morris produces and sells Benson & Hedges in Canada and the United States. The British American Tobacco company operates in Asia, the Pacific, Australia and New Zealand. Japan International operates the U.K. branches.
At one time, Benson & Hedges supplied cigarettes to the royal family of England, particularly King George VI. They were issued a royal warrant in 1878. A royal warrant is given to businesses that supply products or services to the royal court or royal family. This is a prestigious honor for any company. Businesses that are issued a royal warrant can display an official coat of arms on their packaging. In 1999, the royal warrant was dropped due to lack of demand by the family. At that time, Benson & Hedges had to remove the royal seal from their packaging.
Many famous rock band members were known to smoke Benson & Hedges. The band Oasis was very fond of the brand. One of their album covers was designed to depict a Benson & Hedges cigarette pack. Noel of Oasis even named his two cats “Benson” and “Hedges.” Kurt Cobain was also known to smoke Benson & Hedges. Joy Division's Ian Curtis was also a huge fan of Benson & Hedges and was photographed many times while smoking them.
Benson & Hedges are a luxury cigarette made predominantly from high-quality, light Virginian tobacco. The cigarettes are known for their rich, clean tobacco taste with no harsh or chemical aftertaste. The cigarettes have a nice, even, steady burn. The packaging also reflects their upscale quality with simple, elegant designs. They were often marketed to a higher-end clientele.
Benson & Hedges Special Filter Kings
Benson & Hedges Special Filter Kings are a robust full-flavored cigarette. The tobacco's natural spiciness and sweetness is well balanced to create the perfect creamy smoke. With 12 mg of tar and 1.1 mg of nicotine, these will not disappoint the true cigarette enthusiast. Many cigarettes with this level of tar and nicotine could feel harsh, but due to the quality and caliber of these cigarettes, this is not the case.
Benson & Hedges Silver
Benson & Hedges Silver have a luscious smoke infused with hints of berries. The superb tobacco blend creates a mellow, pleasant smoking experience. With 8 mg of tar and .7 mg of nicotine, one gets a real cigarette flavor that is not too harsh or heavy.
Benson & Hedges Smooth Gold Kings
As the name suggests, the Benson & Hedges Smooth Gold Kings are an extremely smooth, well-balanced cigarette. These cigarettes have a light, fruity sweetness that plays perfectly with the fresh tobacco aroma. The silky, buttery smoke provides 6 mg of tar and .6 mg of nicotine. These cigarettes offer the smoker true-cigarette pleasure.