Inventions In The Tobacco Industry

The tobacco industry has invented and created many machineries from scratch to aid the cigarette makers. Some of them maybe familiar to you, while others are not.

The Bonsack machine – the first ever cigarette making machine

A teenager called James A. Bonsack invented this tobacco machinery. Until then, cigarettes had been handmade. The Bonsack was responsible for more efficient cigarette production. The inventor was supported by James B. Duke of American Tobacco Company.

The Bull Jack – a machine that filled bags

The Bull Jack filled muslin bags with Bull Durham tobacco and labelled it as such. It was invented by a man named Rufus Lenoir Patterson and was credited as a wonder at 1800’s as no such tobacco machinery existed before.  Each Bull Durham bag was the size of a pack of cards, according to historic reports.

The Bull Jack bow tier – to tie the Bull Jack bags

John Thomas Dalton, a man with two or three years of education developed a way to tie the tobacco bags filled by the Bull Jack. Until then, the task had been carried out by boys sitting on top of machinery.


Pin Conveyors

Tobacco was first delivered to cigarette machines from farms in wooden boxes with open tops called saratogas. Pin conveyors delivered cut tobacco automatically to machines.

Cigarette Machines

A more modern invention, cigarette machines are vending machines that issue packs of 16 or 18 cigarettes for cash. Some countries have an age -restricted access system to cigarette machines. Japan uses wrinkles and sags in the face of the potential buyer to give access to cigarette machines.


A hand-held device which allows the user to inhale a flavoured liquid called e-liquid. They were invented in 2003 by a Chinese pharmacist called Hon Lik and introduced to the market in 2004. Hon Lik invented the E–cigarette as an alternative to tobacco cigarettes. Consumers are known as “vapers” and a whole subculture has evolved around the product.

Inventions not disclosed

The tobacco industry has been accused of not revealing many of the inventions it has made use of. Due to competition, many companies may keep production -related improvements and discoveries to themselves. A rival getting access to such information would be fatal in a business scenario.

Inventions yet to come

The E – cigarette took the world by storm and many other inventions and improvements will surely be there in the future for tobacco lovers and followers of industry trends. BLOW started marketing E- Hookahs in 2014, which may be a sign of things to come in the future.