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Smoke signals Swiss tobacco fields

Swiss tobacco production is on the decline; only about 200 farmers still grow this labour-intensive crop. Most of them are in the Broye Valley stretching across cantons Vaud and Fribourg. Their production covers only a small share of the tobacco consumed in Switzerland.

Less than 5% of the tobacco used by the industry in Switzerland comes from local producers. The crop plays a marginal role in Swiss agriculture. But the growers that remain want to preserve their traditional production. Two types of tobacco are grown in Switzerland: Burley, air-dried in traditional tobacco hangars, and Virginia, introduced to Switzerland in 1992 and oven-dried. 

(Images: Thomas Kern/Text: Samuel Jaberg,

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