Interview with the founder and CEO of Pure

Pure Tobacco - a paragon of the hookah industry, and the brand that best exemplifies what a modern hookah tobacco is. Pure is a brand that's well known for their FML line of tobacco, a line of mint flavors so cold and chilling that they ushered in a new mint craze, back in 2014. Pure focuses, primarily, on fruit flavors, and they're a brand that's practically a household name at this point, due to how spot on their flavor representations are, and for how well their brand smokes. Over the last month or so, I've had the wonderful opportunity to speak with Johny, the owner of Pure tobacco, about where Pure came from, and what his driving motivations are behind the brand. So sit down with us, pack a bowl of your favorite Pure flavor, and learn a little bit more about the man behind the brand.

  1. Hi Johny, and thanks for joining me today. Would you mind telling our readers today what it is you do? Thanks Wade, I’m the founder and CEO at Pure Tobacco.
  1. What was your first experience like smoking hookah? Was it love at first puff? My first experience smoking hookah was around 25 years ago. I wouldn’t say love at first puff.  I was intrigued by hookah for quite some time and that first smoke was enjoyable.
  1. What was your favorite flavor to smoke, prior to starting Pure Tobacco? My favorite flavor prior to Pure is mint and still is now. Although I do favor citrus flavors a bit more than others.
  1. If you had to describe it, what would you say that the best things about Pure are? We take consumer risk very serious and made sure to use only the highest quality ingredients in our tobacco. While we eliminated those of which have no place in water pipe tobacco.  We’ve also developed a true and trusted formula of creating natural flavors. Not to mention some of the best mentholated flavors on the market.
  1. I have heard your plants are like hospitals, clean and super sanitary, how important is this to you and how much do you stress this on your employees? As I’ve mentioned in the last question. Our number one priority is the consumer, which puts their trust in us as the manufacturer. I believe any product that will be consumed must be handled in a sanitary environment. This is not a choice but our obligation to our fans. Our employees know what we expect from them and are reminded of this on a daily basis.
  1. What brand in the hookah industry do you currently have the most respect for? I have respect for all the successful manufacturers in this industry. Each has contributed in the evolving of this great pastime.
  1. Where do you see Pure going in the future? We’re looking to expand by opening more facilities to keep up with the demand. Currently we are in the works of opening a factory in South America and looking to opening more across the globe.
  1. How did your early experiences with hookah help shape what Pure has become in the industry currently? We used to own one of the largest import export companies in this industry. Having the knowledge and experience helped us greatly. We already had distribution outlets setup. Now it was just listening to consumers and creating a product that would exceed their expectations.
  1. Let’s talk about Brazil – Pure is huge down there, what do you think has helped to attribute to that? Again listening to our fans and giving them what they want. Brazilian smokers are much different than that in the US. They demand that you manufacture to their preferences and are always looking for what’s trending at that time. Where as US smokers tend to stick with traditional. Our FML line opened doors for us, which helped introduce our other flavors into Brazil and many other countries as well. So I would say FML attributed much in our success in South America and now it’s become the top selling flavor in those countries.
  1. I’ve heard that there are more FML flavors in the works, do you have any information to share about those? We currently have 8 flavors in the FML line. All of these flavors have been released but a few may not be available for distribution at this time. As for new flavors of FML, those are in the works and I’ll keep everyone informed as we progress.
  2. What is your favorite flavor that you produce? It would be difficult to choose just one flavor but I can list my go to flavors at the moment. Which would be, the FML’s, Fresh Mint, Morangie, Lemon Mint and Perfect Peach.
  3. If you could do one thing differently in Pure’s history, what would it be? Anything you would change? Or are you happy with what you’ve done and what Pure has become?  I’m very pleased and content with the success of Pure. The only thing I would have changed is developing this brand sooner than later.
  4. It often times seems as if other hookah markets, such as Brazil and Europe, have a more popular hookah culture than the US does. Do you agree with this? Yes and no.
  5. If yes – what can the US do to change that? Be more open mined and receptive to newer. When it comes to the advancement of the hookah culture. I believe the international market wins in that category.
  6. If no – why not? Nowhere in the world will you see more hookah lounges and cafes than in the US. I think we still dominate in popularity.
  7. Do you think that there’s any kind of void in hookah right now? Like a product that doesn’t exist that should? Not necessarily a void. New products are coming out all the time, which I see as an added bonus. Although I think the industry is great the way is.
  8. Do you prefer smoking with foil, or an HMD(Heat Management Device)? I prefer foil.
  9. What kind of bowl do you prefer? Funnel, vortex, Egyptian, etc? Egyptian or funnel depends on what I’m smoking.
  10. Do you have a favorite setup that you use? Currently B2 and Regal are my go to.
  1. Where’s the best place to smoke? I’d say backyard by the pool is a great place to smoke.

I'd like to thank Johny for taking the time out of his busy schedule to sit down and chat with me, and I'm very excited to see what the future has in store for Pure! What do you think? Are there any questions we missed? Does Johny seem like someone you'd like to smoke a bowl with? Is Pure a brand that exemplifies what Johny wants it to be - clean, fresh, and accurate? What's your favorite Pure flavor? Let me know in those comments below! As always guys, thank you so much for reading, and happy smokes!

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