Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 20, 2011 04:04 PM
Since Australia passed legislation that will force tobacco companies to sell all of their products in brand name-free, plain green packaging with such heartwarming statements as “Smoking causes blindness” or “Don’t let children breathe your smoke” (and are accompanied by equally pleasant images), tobacco companies have been in a bit of snit.
On Tuesday, Philip Morris Asia became the third tobacco giant, along with British American Tobacco and Imperial Tobacco, to file suit in the country’s High Court to try and put a stop to such an effort, Reuters reports.
The new legislation in Australia “is being closely watched by governments considering similar moves in Europe, Canada, and New Zealand,” Reuters notes, which is part of the reason why the tobacco companies are getting all worked up about it. But Philip Morris claims it has other reasons as well.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 2, 2011 11:31 AM
Big-tobacco companies have been losing battles for years as smokers have been run out of bars and restaurants across America as well as heavy taxes that help fund anti-smoking programs. The anti-tobacco marketing appear to have helped make smoking uncool, with less than 20% of American adults smoking last year, part of a "decades-long decline" as the Wall Street Journal puts it.
So tobacco companies cheered the recent blocking by a U.S. judge blocking the U.S. government's move forcing tobacco companies to put nasty imagery on its packaging to show smokers what might happen to them if they continue inhaling their nicotine.
Now the Associated Press reports that the tobacco companies have another reason to pass around cigars: “States have cut funding for tobacco prevention programs 12 percent this year, to the lowest level since 1999,” according to a new report by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the American Cancer Society and other groups.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 22, 2011 01:01 PM
Tobacco giant Philip Morris isn't one to dawdle. As soon as Australia's controversial mandatory "plain packaging" for cigarette brands (examples above) were passed on Nov. 21st, Morris launched a multi-billion-dollar legal action against the Federal Government.
The country's Health Minister Nicola Roxon called it a "great day for Australia," while Philip Morris Asia (which oversees its brands sales in Australia) announced it would fight tooth and nail to challenge the laws both domestically and internationally.
“We are left with no option," said Philip Morris Asia spokesperson Anne Edwards in a press release. "The Government has passed this legislation despite being unable to demonstrate that it will be effective at reducing smoking and has ignored the widespread concerns raised in Australia and internationally regarding the serious legal issues associated with plain packaging.”Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 8, 2011 12:28 PM
U.S. District Judge Richard Leon yesterday blocked the new FDA Graphic Warnings Rule mandated by Congress in June under the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009.
The controversial ruling forces tobacco companies (already on the hook for a public education campaign) to show graphic images on cigarette packs, including rotting and diseased teeth and gums; a man with a tracheotomy smoking; the corpse of a smoker; diseased lungs; and a mother holding her baby with smoke swirling around them.
Six tobacco companies — R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., Lorillard Tobacco Co., Commonwealth Brands Inc., Liggett Group and Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Co. — filed the suit, which Leon said it’s likely they would win.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on November 7, 2011 07:01 PM
Michael Jackson's personal physician, Conrad Murray, found guilty of involuntary manslaughter.
Republican presidential wannabe Herman Cain slapped with more charges of sexual harassment.
U.S. district judge sides with tobacco companies and finds FDA's proposed graphic cigarette packages unconstitutional.
Bank of America must pay $410 million to settle debit card overdraft class action suit.
Coca-Cola named Ad Age's marketer of the year.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg tells Charlie Rose that Steve Jobs was an advisor (but says Apple didn't attempt to buy him out).
Google's head lobbyist steps down.
National Geographic Channels names new U.S. president and CMO.
New York Times top digital exec announces retirement.
& Zynga reportedly plans post-Thanksgiving IPO, on Nov. 24.
brands under fire
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 3, 2011 03:03 PM
The U.S. government is always happy to make a few extra tax dollars but there is one source of tax cash that they are hoping to stop receiving — and are even willing to spend money to try and help make it end.
We’re talking, of course, about cigarettes, the cough-inducing habit that our culture is working hard to stamp out with its collective heel. That stamping often comes in the form of so-called sin taxes so high that it can cost close to $15 to buy a pack of smokes in New York City. And, of course, there are the nasty packages slated for Sept. 2012 that will inform consumers of just what tobacco can do to you or your unborn child that cigarette manufacturers will soon have to put their product in.
Uncle Sam is now planning to augment the graphic shock packaging with the dreaded E word: education.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 27, 2011 02:05 PM
blu Cigs, an e-cigarette brand, just sponsored the first "Great American Butt Clean" on Oct. 22 — but you wouldn't guess it from the cigarette butt clean-up event's Facebook page. The page is listed as belonging to a non-profit organization, and there is no other information provided.
It's only if you read The Charlotte Observer, which promoted the event by one of Charlotte, NC's, own, or stumbled across Blu Cigs' press release, that outsiders might have known who was behind it.
"blu makes it a priority to cut down on the waste generated by traditional cigarettes. The rechargeable battery and reusable design of our e-cigs offer a less wasteful option, but it's only a first step," commented Jason Healy, President of blu. "As a Charlotte-based company, we're excited to have this opportunity to go even further by partnering with Keep Mecklenburg Beautiful for this important day of clean-up, that's sure to be a tradition for many years to come."Continue reading...
brand of crazy
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 9, 2011 11:02 AM
Russian cigarette-maker Donskoy Tabak has dropped its plans for a teen-targeted brand.
The back-story: Russia’s Ministry of Health is putting together the “strictest anti-tobacco law to date,” which would outlaw lighting up in “trains, airports, and jet liners” as well as up the tax on cigarettes significantly, according to Vesti (and translated by GlobalVoices.com), tobacco manufacturers need to find new consumers to plunk down rubles to suck down their product, right?
Mercifully, Donskoy Tabak, one of Russia’s largest tobacco companies, has been shamed out of its new line of cigarettes that were aimed at teens and young women, called “Sweet Dreams,” according to blogger Alexey Navalny (as translated by Global Voices).Continue reading...