Our Story

Established in 1922, the Southern Association of Wholesale Distributors, “the Southern” (formerly the Southern Tobacco and Candy Association) is a 14-state regional trade association representing the interests of corporations and individuals involved in the manufacturing, sales, and distribution of convenience products.

Members consist of wholesalers, manufacturers, brokers, and others involved in the convenience products industry. From maker to market, the association has benefits and services to fill every channel member’s needs.

Member states include: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.

The 14 states that comprise the region covered by the Southern contain 46% of all c-stores in the country as reported in Trade Dimensions 2006 Directory of Convenience Stores. Specifically, that 46% is made up of over 66,653 c-stores…the majority of which are serviced by wholesale distributors who are members of our organization.

Want more information on the Southern Association of Wholesale Distributors? Do you want to find out about the latest products and services, seminars and conventions, publications and resources for the distribution industry? Simply click on the appropriate tab across the top of the page for more information on becoming a member or attending/exhibiting at our annual convention.

Our Mission

The Southern Meetings with a Mission
To lead the effort to promote Professional Standards by improving the quality of wholesale distributor programs, services and operations.

To be a Representative and Advocate for wholesale distributors by promoting understanding of the responsibilities, functions and needs of wholesale distributors before government, corporations, foundations and community leaders throughout the state, region and nation.

To provide Professional Development opportunities for wholesale distributors, and their employees through publications, training, meetings and other activities.

To provide Member Services that give members access to selected goods and services which might otherwise be unavailable to them.