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Carotte de tabac réalisée par Semios
Tobacco sign

Tobacco sign

The “carrot” is the name of the tobacco sign. The name was given to the red sign in front of all tobacconists in France.

They have been legally required to have one since 1906 to let the public know that the establishment sells tobacco. All tobacconists must have a lighted tobacco sign above their store.

Why do the French use this symbol?

We have to go back to the 16th century to understand why the tobacco “carrot” sign has such a specific shape. In those days, tobacco was sold in leaves, not in packets as it is today, but in small rolls, tied together… And these rolls looked like carrots!

Tobacco sign made by Semios