Manufacturer of cigarette rolling papers founded in Angoulème, France by the Lacroix family based on a patent granted in 1799. Later expansion resulted in operations being established in Pontypridd, Wales and Wilrijk Belgium. Continued as a family business well into the 1990's when it eventually became part of the British Imperial Tobacco group.
The brand name was derived from the products similarities to rice paper (riz in French), and the family name Lacroix or literally the cross. Hence the name "Riz La +" adopted in the nineteenth century, (the "+" signifying the cross/croix part), later "Rizla+". Although generally simply known and loved as Rizla.
Rizla's current colour coded product range of cigarette papers comprises;
Green and Red are both medium weight cigarette papers, with Green (apparently the most popular in the UK at least) differentiated by the removal of the corners ("for ease of rolling"). Blue is a fine weight cigarette paper; Orange is the liquorice flavoured heavy weight paper and the comparatively rare White is a perforated heavy weight paper.
In addition to these 'Regular' sized papers, the Green, Red and Blue variants are also available in 'King-Size', with Blue also available in a slim 'King-Size'. There are also Rizla+ filter tips and a variety of Rizla+ branded rolling machines for those whose motor-skills are insufficiently developed to actually roll their own.
It is of course common knowledge that Rizla's products are used not only for the purposes of smoking tobacco but also for cannabis and that the 'King-Size' papers are specifically targeted for that market. This obviously places the company in something of a moral quandary as it obviously has no wish to be seen profiting from or condoning what is considered by many as an 'illegal' activity. The company therefore insists that "The vast majority of Rizlas are used for hand-rolled tobacco" * and that its 'King-Size' products are used by people who, well, like to roll their own king-size cigarettes.
* So says Gareth Davis, the chief executive of Imperial Tobacco quoted in
The skin trade (Thursday July 12, 2001) from
Historical Rizla information derived from
Rizla product information from http://www.rizla.com