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Vogue Black and White Cigarettes

The black and white music video directed by David Fincher for Madonna’s song Vogue, inspired from the American classical Hollywood cinema of the 20’s and the 30’s, features, among numerous poses with a reference, certain smoking scenes; although there is no obvious suggestion that those were Vogue cigarettes, there certainly is some place for speculation on the matter. Why? Because Vogue cigarettes share the same stylistic inspiration and define their fashion orientation in the same cultural and lifestyle background as this hit of the ’90s. Thus, the assumption that Madonna’s smoking scenes make a hint to the brand of cigarettes Vogue would be only logical.

Vogue refers also to restoring an attitude and reinstating the beauty and elegance of a long-gone era. The interest in looks, shapes, textures and colors, flavors, scents and other sophisticates refinements, ensured the popularity of Vogue cigarettes worldwide. An astonishing number of people buy Vogue cigarettes online.

Vogue Black and White

Vogue Black and White

Vogue Black and White

Vogue Black and White

Vogue Black and White

Vogue Black and White

New York City offers raising the age for buying cigarettes

No one under 21 would be able to buy cigarettes in the city under a proposal unveiled Monday to make it the most densely populated place in America to set a minimum age, which is high.

imagesExtending the decade of moves to combat smoking in the largest city of the country, the measure is aimed at stopping young people from developing the habit, which remains the leading preventable cause of death, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said as she announced the plan. Eighty percent of smokers in the work of lighting before they were 21, officials said.

“The fact is, in this decision, where smoking begins,” she said, surrounded by colleagues and the health commissioner of the city. With support in the Council and the support of Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the proposal has the political ingredients to pass through.

But it may face questions about its effectiveness and fairness. Retailers representative proposed measure is simply to go young smokers to neighboring communities or the corner store instead of cigarette sellers shops in the city, and the smokers’ rights activist called it a “government paternalism at its worst.”

Under federal law, no one under 18 cannot buy tobacco anywhere in the country. Four states and some communities have grown to the age of 19 years, and at least two communities agreed to raise it to 21.

A similar proposal has been floated in the Legislature of Texas, but it is on hold after the board about the budget it will cost the state more than $ 42 million in cigarette tax revenue within two years.

Public health and anti-smoking advocates, the costs paid by the state is ahead of smoking on human life.

They say a higher minimum age for buying tobacco prevents, or at least delay, the young people from starting to smoke and thus limiting their risks to health.

“Infringement of smoking among these age groups is critical to winning the fight against tobacco and to reduce mortality, morbidity and health care costs it causes,” said Susan M. Liss, executive director of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free.

Smoking has become less common in the general New York City over the last decade, but has a plateau at 8.5 per cent of urban public high school students since 2007. An estimated 20,000 of them smoke today.

It is illegal for many of them to buy cigarettes, but the increase of the minimum age to prohibit smoking little older friends to buy from them.

City officials cited statistical modeling, published in the Journal of Health Policy, it is assumed that increasing the age to purchase tobacco 21 nationally can reduce smoking rates by two-thirds of the 14-to-17-year-olds and half of 18-to -20 – summer more than 50 years. Texas budget officials predicted a third of the reduction of tobacco product by 18-to-20-year olds.

A higher minimum age of purchase of tobacco could cut into sales, which account for 40 percent of gross income for the average convenience store, said Jeff Lenard, a spokesman for the National Association of Convenience Stores. But he suggested that young smokers would simply go out of the city – the minimum age is 19 in nearby Long Island and New Jersey, for example – or the black market traders.

Audrey Silk smoker people thought old enough to vote and serve in the military should be allowed to decide whether to use cigarettes.

“Intolerance for those who smoke to justify anti-smokers to reduce the adult status of children,” said Silk, who founded the group that sued the city over the previous restrictions of tobacco.

Advocates say the measure is parallel does not vote, but drinking. They refer to the laws prohibiting the sale of alcohol to persons under 21.

The nation’s largest cigarette maker, Altria Group, had no immediate comment, spokesman David Sutton said. Earlier, he said that in Richmond, Va.-based Company that produces the best-selling brand Marlboro, supported by federal legislation in 2009 that gave the Food and Drug Administration authority to regulate tobacco products, which includes a variety of retail restrictions.

Representatives for R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. did not immediately respond to phone and email inquiries. Based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, this makes Camel and other brands.

The age limit is 21 in Needham, Mass., and went to 21 in another suburb of Boston, Canton. Canton Board of Health approved the changes this month, but it is not yet implemented, said the Director of Public Health John L. Ciccotelli.

Plans call for an annual study on reducing smoking among high school students Canton – and the elimination of the extent to five years if it is not, he said.

In Needham, high school smoking rate has dropped from about 13 per cent to 5.5 per cent from the 21-year threshold came into effect in 2006, Director of Public Health Janice Burns said. It’s not clear how much reduction is due to the age limit.

Since Bloomberg took office in 2002, New York, helped to impose the highest cigarette taxes in the country, it is forbidden to smoke in parks and on beaches and are held occasionally graphic advertising campaign about the dangers of smoking.

Last month, Bloomberg proposed to keep cigarettes out of sight in shops and stores to stop from taking cigarette coupons.

Hearing by the Board on the proposal and the age limit is set for May 2.

Several New York City smoking rules have survived lawsuits. But a federal appeals court last year said the city cannot force tobacco retailers to display gruesome images of diseased lungs and rotting teeth.

Quinn, a leading Democratic candidate for success next year Bloomberg, is often seen as an ally of his.

Bloomberg also has prompted a number of other innovative public health measures, such as forcing chain restaurants to post calorie counts on their menus, banning artificial Tran’s fats in restaurants and attempting to limit the amount of sugary drinks. The court overturned a large drink rules in the last month, but the city is appealing.

While Bloomberg has led many anti-smoking initiatives, this one came from the council – in particular, a board member James Gennaro, who lost his mother to lung cancer after she smoked for decades.

Gov legislate for plain cigarette packs this year

Minister wanted to introduce plain packaging for cigs through Australia with legislation, after becoming convinced that the branding is the main factor.

220px-Plain_cigarette_packagingThe legislation was announced by the Queen’s speech in May, the smoking is expected to be banned in cars. The ban is very hard for police and in general for law and they believe in group pressure that will have the main impact to the drivers ban using phones.

David Cameron referred to the possibility of plain pack introducing, without any timetable Ministers and of smoking ban reduces in the UK.

We have to follow what they have done in Australia. The evidence suggests it is going to detect youth. There is going for legislation.

The move comes after Lancet study of 19 countries in the UK down the health wellbeing. It found Britan’s space of decline of premature mortality of the Australian members and European Union members. The main reason consists in the durability of the public health, including drinks, drugs and diets.

Smoking causes more the 100,000 deaths every year in the UK. Despite a enormous reduction in the number of smoking since the 1950s, it still estimate a five part of British population of smokers. There is already a full ban on cigarette ads, and in one of the Labor government’s most of smoking places was banned. The 2009 Health Act opened display of tobacco products from April a year ago and will come into force only in April 2015.

Ministers are looking to see the troubled families, and can start to design for improving the diets of more than 120,000 families.

Researchers show that poorer families are far more inclining to obesity, immune to public health messages. In schools research is showing that wealthier families are taking up healthy food options.

The Department of Health started a consultation in March 2011 on plain packs which ended last August for department by the University of Sterling found that “plain packs colors have negative message, projected a less desirable smoker identity, and expose the reality of smoking.”

The study also found that non-smokers tended to find plain packaging less appealing than did smokers, and younger respondents tended to find it less appealing than did older respondents. Around two thirds of smokers say they started smoking before they were 18.

The study also found

Since December in Australia cigarettes must be sold in uniform drab olive-green packets with graphic health warnings. The only marker of difference between products is the brand name written on the packet in a uniform style. New Zealand has promised to follow the Australian lead.

The Australian attorney-general, Mark Dreyfus, has defended the packaging saying “it is anti-cancer, not anti-trade”. There has been some evidence that smokers are now trying to cover up the packaging with plasters.

Profits of British American Tobacco

British American Tobacco Plc (bats), the largest cigarette manufacturer in Europe, said first-half operating profit rose 3 percent above the price of the offset stagnant traffic.

Adjusted operating profit rose to 2.84 billion pounds ($ 4.4 billion) from 2.76 billion pounds a year earlier, the London-based company said in a statement today. This was in accordance with 2.83 billion pounds average of five analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Sales were little changed at 7.45 billion pounds.

The make of Lucky Strike brand and Pall Mall cigarettes have increased prices and pushed the emerging markets to offset the increase in state taxes and reduce tobacco use in America. Emerging markets account for 75 percent of BAT and nearly 60 percent of its profits.

“Despite the global economic instability and the adverse impact of exchange rates, British American Tobacco put another good set of results,” chairman Richard Burrows said in a statement.

Cigarette shipments were unchanged in the first half, as growth in sales of Lucky Strike and Pall Mall was offset sluggish conditions in southern Europe and the rise in disposable supplies in the last year in Japan as a result of the earthquake and tsunamis in the region, which hurt local producers of tobacco.

In Brazil, the largest market of BAT in terms of sales, the company raised cigarette prices in April before the tax increase in May, which resulted in a “good profit growth,” which was largely offset by the weakening of the real, the company said.

In Russia, where the market share of BAT, and increased profits for the first six months of the year fueled by higher sales of cigarettes Kent, the government plans to increase excise taxes on tobacco by 40 percent annually until 2015, according to his tax plan.

Robust

“In the absence of a sharp revision of excise taxes and, instead, a steady and regular increase of excise taxes, the price outlook BAT should remain robust in its core markets,” Simon Hales, an analyst at Barclays, said in a July 19 report. “In addition, BAT became more comfortable in making a larger increase in prices to offset the change in the pitch motion of the tax.”

The so-called company brands drives, including Dunhill, Kent, Lucky Strike and Pall Mall, increased volumes of 4 per cent. These brands now account for about one-third of deliveries, compared with 12 percent in 2002, according to Jefferies International analyst Dirk van Vlaanderen.

Australia has adopted a law to come into force on 1 December, which would make the first country to ban logos on cigarette packaging in efforts to combat smoking. BAT, which denies the ban, is the largest seller of tobacco in the country with a market share of 47 percent, according to Barclays Capital. Britain and New Zealand is also considering such legislation.

Last week, Philip Morris International, Inc (PM), the largest publicly traded tobacco company in the world, reported second-quarter profit that beat analysts’ estimates, so that the demand for cigarettes in Eastern Europe. Yesterday, Imperial Tobacco Plc said reducing tobacco supply fell in its third quarter.

British American Tobacco also said it bought 553 million pounds of shares in the period, and increased its interim dividend 11 percent to 42.2 pence. Its shares were little changed at 3308 pence in London yesterday.

New law put out some rolls on cigarettes stores

Jenny Chen has $ 32,500 paper weight.

Chen, manager of smoking on the island of South College Road in Wilmington, purchased RYO Station earlier this year. The machine allows customers to create their own cigarettes, cheaper alternative to buying bags or cardboard boxes. She charged $ 22 200 and 8 minutes, the client was worth a box of cigarettes.

But few know the position of the recently passed federal highway law closes hundreds of stores where smokers can hide their cigarettes. The bill provides funding for roads over the next two years, but it also contains other provisions that extend from the lower interest rates on student loans to provide new, which is a cigarette manufacturer. Under the new law, the store is a manufacturer of Chen because she owns “the deployment of its own” machine. President Obama signed the bill into law on Friday.

Stainless steel machine now sits idly in his shop. Without the production of tobacco permit from the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, working her “roll your own” machines, is illegal. For small business owners, like Chen, permitting manufacturers can not be said Lisa Fleck, director of marketing tobacco Exit Express.

“There are 50 claims and none of them has a chance to meet the retail,” said Fleck, whose company supplies the car up to 200 stores. “It’s absurd.”

Roll-your own cigarettes make up just over 1 percent of the cigarettes consumed in the United States, according to Fleck. She said: “big tobacco” lobbyists spent millions to get language added to the bill.

“It was David versus Goliath scenario,” Fleck said. “We could not throw money at it.”

Chen shop sells pipe tobacco, pipes and cigarettes, but it was a cigarette mills that Chen rental for customers who install the store apart from its competitors. Cigarette Island was opened in April, and Chen said that she was just starting to build a customer base. She manages the store, but it belongs to her cousin. He learned of the mills cigarette from a friend who told him it was profitable. He invested about $ 80,000 per store, including the purchase of gas stations ROY.

Chen said the store was about $ 10,200 rolled cigarettes. Customers also bought pipe tobacco, paper and filters. She said about 10 people a day come to use the machine. Most customers said they saved between $ 40 and $ 100 per month to use the device.

“The government keeps them to choose what we want to do,” she said.

Without the profits from the station RYO filling, storage in the store in business is impossible. Chen said that the store will close as soon as it sells its current reserves and equipment.

“It’s very painful,” she said. “The profit on cigarettes is not great. I can not pay the rent without a car.”

Shop Chan is one of many closing their doors, Fleck said. Since the law was passed, Fleck said that thousands of people lost their jobs and shops featuring cars going out of business.

“We put people to work,” Fleck said. “I would say 80 percent want to go out of business. Some of them are going to paddle for a while, but it’s only a matter of time.”

Electronic cigarettes are a new tool to quit smoking

Adam Davis was smoking nearly a pack of cigarettes a day for 10 years. In 2010, Davis, in Millville, was given a starter pack of electronic cigarette. A month later, a hot country program director for 107.7 only smoking electronic cigarettes, and two months after smoking the electronic cigarette, he gave up smoking completely and currently smoking one and a half years.

Like Davis, more smokers are turning to electronic cigarettes – also known as electronic cigarette or e-cigarettes – as a way to quit smoking altogether, according to an article published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. In fact, more people in the United States looking for electronic cigarettes on the Internet than any other alternative to smoking, nicotine and smoking cessation product, according to the article. Electronic cigarettes look like conventional cigarettes appearance and use. The electronic cigarette contains nicotine and other chemicals that turn into vapor inhalation.

Most electronic cigarettes operate on rechargeable lithium batteries, as well as new cartridges can be purchased at most places that distribute tobacco products and the Internet.

Davis said he still has a craving for another cigarette from time to time, but the electronic cigarettes to help him out after the cessation of other products failed. “I felt that the main thing (smoking electronic cigarettes) did change their smoking habit because it makes it easier for me to get out,” he said. “I tried to quit several times before, with the help of patches and Chantix. It seemed more relaxed approach.” Another former smoker, Liz Davis, no relation, in State College, Pennsylvania, started smoking electronic cigarettes, when they went on sale at the Sheetz gas station where she works. She smoked regular cigarettes for about a year in advance.

After a month of smoking electronic cigarettes, Davis said she had no more desire to smoke regular cigarettes. Four months later, she gave up smoking completely, although it is to keep electronic cigarettes on hand in case of need. She said she would recommend to people smoking in the workplace as a way to reduce their intake of toxins, but she also said nicotine in electronic cigarettes are still bad for the body.

Study

Article from American Journal of Preventive Medicine was founded on the Boston University Medical Center study conducted by the authors, Michael B. Siegel, Kerry L. Tanwar and Kathleen C. Wood. The full article can be found at http://www. ajpmonline.org/article/S0749-3797 (10) 00792-0/fulltext. The study consisted of 222 participants who smoked electronic cigarettes for six months. Of all smokers, 31 percent had quit smoking regular cigarettes, the study said.

Of those who quit smoking regular cigarettes, 56.7 percent were using electronic cigarettes, 9 percent use tobacco without nicotine and 34.3 percent were nicotine-free, the study says. In addition, 66.8 percent of smokers reported reducing the number of cigarettes smoked per day after smoking electronic cigarettes, the study said. The conclusion was “e-cigarettes may have promise as a method of smoking and that they merit further study using more rigorous study design,” the study says.

FDA skeptical

Due to the lack of clinical studies on electronic cigarettes, Food and Drug Administration says it does not recognize them as recommended smoking cessation product. Electronic cigarettes contain ingredients that are toxic to humans, FDA says.

The FDA also says that electronic cigarettes can be attractive to children and bring them to the use of other tobacco products. Electronic cigarettes fall under the category of “tobacco products” in accordance with Federal Law Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act because they contain nicotine. This gives the FDA the right to establish rules for the electronic cigarettes in the future. The FDA recommends alternative electronic cigarette smoking, including prescription drugs and over-the-counter products such as patches, nicotine lozenges and nicotine chewing gum.

First Uk Electronic Cigarette Shop for Liberro

Start-ups, Emma and Simon Christ, officially opened its first store Liberro electronic cigarettes last week after his success on the Internet. They have been selling electronic cigarettes worldwide through its web site www.liberro.co.uk over the past four years and were one of the first companies to introduce electronic cigarettes in the UK.

The head office and distribution center Liberro in Buntingford and the number of customers regularly visit the unit to buy electronic cigarettes, so it was a natural progression to open a store in the area. If successful, Liberro plan to expand by opening more stores across the UK.

Advisor to the Mayor and Buntingford, Stan Bull, visited the new shop at 59a High Street to toast their success and to declare officially open shop. He said: “In the retail trade in the city for many years and the head of the cooperative, I never looked back, and I encourage all retailers in the city, I want to Liberro every success in their new store.”.

“We are pleased that the response we received last week, as the store opened,” commented Emma Christ, managing director of Liberro. “Awareness of electronic cigarettes is still relatively low, and people do not believe that electronic cigarettes are or how they work. Advantage of the store is that we can give customers the opportunity to try and check e-cigarette and a range of flavored liquid to see what they like.There are over 50 different flavors (http://www.liberro.co.uk/liberro-eliquid-purity), in various nicotine strengths, and these are the most popular flavors of regular and menthol (such as traditional cigarettes), and there are a variety of fun flavors of chocolate and fruit crush on the Eskimos and the key lime delight! ”

Simon Christ, CEO Liberro converted from cigarettes Electronic cigarettes, when he created the company and regularly smokes Liberro Realis () and electronic cigars (http://www.liberro.co.uk/disposable-e-cigs-cigars). He commented: “Electronic cigarettes are a great alternative to smoking, and they are healthy too, so they do not contain tar, tobacco or carbon monoxide, but it gives me a satisfying hit of nicotine, that I have with tobacco cigarettes. Taste of cigars as well as tobacco, cigars, too, that I smoked, and both electronic cigarettes and electronic cigars produce a realistic satisfies the smoke like vapor without the traditional smell of cigarettes or ashes. key benefits is that I can e-smoke in places where smoking is prohibited, such as pubs and restaurants, so I can join in the conversation with friends and family instead of out on the street – and they’re about 70% cheaper than traditional cigarettes, too! ”

Notes to editors

Liberro is one of the leading UK electronic cigarette companies that sell disposable electronic cigarette starter packs, fluids, and consumables over the Internet.

Electronic cigarettes are a healthier alternative to cigarettes and to give a satisfactory nicotine hit, without the tar or tobacco, carbon monoxide, or additional substances found in traditional cigarettes. They can smoke at the bar, office, car, home, or because they do not emit harmful chemicals, and they do not smell like traditional cigarettes. Electronic cigarettes are about 70% cheaper than smoking traditional cigarettes.

 

State targets do-it-yourself tobacco shops for taxes

Dawn of day, the store clerk in DIY tobacco in Bremerton, said that they call their product “smokes” instead of cigarettes; to make a distinction between machines rolled tobacco and manufactured cigarettes Marlboro, as well as a cigarettespub.biz/camel. Customers buy loose tobacco and rolling papers, and then rent a time machine, which can be up to 200 cigarettes in eight minutes.

A carton of smokes costs about $32 while a carton of manufactured cigarettes at a retail location costs about $80.The attorney general’s office introduced Senate Bill 6564 Jan. 30 which aims to roll their machines illegal in Washington State. Roll-your own tobacco advocates argue that the bill, sponsored by tobacco Philip Morris, is a way to crush a little competition.The bill replaced House Bill 2565 which was heard before the Senate and House Jan. 23 and 24 and targeted only the so-called “tax loophole” that sponsors argued these small shops were exploiting. Shops like DIY do not pay a state or federal cigarette tax, which is $30 per carton for Washington state. Instead, they pay a lesser tobacco products tax.

“It will close us down,” Cassie Kroesser, owner of DIY Tobacco, said. “Quite simply, I will have to file for bankruptcy if this bill passes.”

Christine Rolfes 23 districts senator who sponsored the original bill, the categories of tobacco stores as “unregulated cigarette manufacturers”, which makes cigarettes more accessible to people, particularly underage smokers.

Rolfes came out of the new bill, and Karen Keiser, 33rd District senator, became the main sponsor.

“The purpose of the bill is not to put people out of business,” said Rolfes. “It’s to level the playing field. Business model is new, but public health is concerned that the model will grow, if left unregulated. They do not follow the rules of fire safety regulations or public health.”
Rolfes said that there are two issues concerning the deployment of their own cigarettes, and public health and safety. The first is that the cigarettes behind the counter or locked behind glass. Rolfes and 36th district Senator Jean Kohl-Welles believe that the model can give minors access to cigarettes for smokers, they do not have the convenience or grocery stores.

Day argued that the majority of its clients for over 35 years and include “a lot of older people with limited mobility.” It’s just not” teenager stuff” they want to wait for cigarettes.

Day also explained that the store checks the ID of all its patrons in the majority. To use the machine, the client must show their ID, buy a bag of tobacco on the counter and pay rent for the rolling machine to work. Although children are allowed in the shops, Day argued that they can not operate the machine without her knowledge.

Scott Daniels, Kitsap Public Health District deputy director, said that “anything that encourages or promotes the use of tobacco is not something we support.” However, there has been no guidance from the board on this legislation and whether or not cigarette rolling machines pose a public health risk.

“I would prefer that you would not even allow these machines in our state,” said Mary Selecky, Secretary of Health Washington State Department of Health. “But if they are in, they should be by the same rules for all tobacco products.”

The Washington Fire Chief’s Association supported the bill in the House hearing January 24 on the grounds that roll their own cigarettes are not required to use fire-resistant paper, such as industrial cigarettes. A fire safe paper guarantees that the cigarette is lit, if left unattended, said Dylan Doty, a spokesman of the association.

“Cigarettes are the leading cause of house fires across the nation,” Doty said. “By making these folks manufacturers, they then would have to comply with the same rules and regulations for safety.”

Eugene Hall, a smoker and regular customer at DIY, said that the real issue is not about public health but business competition.

“No one says smoking is good for you, but I use her store, because it first opened and it’s a good product that is 100 percent natural without any chemicals and fillers. It is more accurate,” said Hall. “It’s just big names are afraid of competition.”

Korean Grocer’s Association recently filed a complaint two months ago with a committee of Washington Liquor Control that a roll of tobacco shops of their own machines has done their “sales slump” and that tax loopholes unfair to businesses that must pay cigarette taxes, said TC Bentler, Washington representative of the Association of Neighbourhood shops.

Roll-your-own shops in the state have grown from 53 stores to 65 stores since the grocer’s association filed their complaint.

The bill prohibiting roll-your-own tobacco machines was introduced for a first reading in the senate Jan. 31 and awaits a senate floor vote.

 

Two Roll-Your-Own-Cigarette Stores to Close

Two stores, on Staten Island and in Chinatown, have agreed to stop selling roll-your-own cigarettes after New York City accused them of being fronts for evading cigarette taxes.

The owners of the stores, both called Island Smokes, agreed to close them by February as part of a consent decree filed in Federal District Court in Manhattan, according to the city’s Law Department. They also agreed that no one associated with the businesses would operate a similar enterprise in New York City; stores had already been planned for the East Village and Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.

The stores, which sell loose tobacco and rolling papers and have machines to help customers make their cigarettes, had appeared to operate in a legal gray area. The owners had argued that because they sold loose tobacco, they should not be subject to full state and city cigarette taxes, which can nearly double the price of a pack of cigarettes.

But the city’s lawyers contended that the businesses were set up to defy tax laws, which have pushed the price of cigarettes in the city to more than $10 a pack. They noted that store employees would help customers assemble the tobacco into cigarettes, including filters, using the machines on the premises. The cigarettes, packaged in a small tin, cost $6, or $4.50 for a refill.

“The success of the lawsuit should serve as a reminder to others thinking of ‘gimmicks’ to skirt New York City’s tough cigarette laws that the city will enforce those laws vigorously,” Michael A. Cardozo, the city’s corporation counsel, said in a statement. Mr. Cardozo noted that the city had ordered other stores to comply with tax laws or face litigation.

Jonathan B. Behrins, a lawyer for the shop owners, said that though he thought Island Smokes’ case was winnable, “a business decision” was made to close, rather than bear the cost of litigation.

“They researched the law through and through, and there’s a gaping exception for pipe and loose tobacco,” Mr. Behrins said. “These gentlemen saw the opportunity to make a niche out of it.” He said the stores appealed to people who wanted additive-free, “more organic” cigarettes, and just because customers used the machines in the stores, the city “put us in the same category with the Philip Morrises of the world, and that’s not fair.”

Similar stores under other ownership have proliferated, including at least three on Staten Island, he said. He compared the litigation against his clients to the Bloomberg administration’s grading of restaurants for compliance with health rules, which has led to some grumbling that the administration is overzealous.

The Bloomberg administration has portrayed cigarette taxes as not just a revenue source but as a tool to improve public health by discouraging people from smoking.

By ANEMONA HARTOCOLLIS

nytimes.com

Tobacco Stoks Lead Amperiiprise

Wall St. Watchdog reveals information regarding Ameriprise Financial’s top holdings in the Consumer Goods sector for the quarter ending September 30th, 2011. The firm held 320 stocks in the Consumer Goods sector at the end of the quarter with an aggregate market value of $12.814 billion.

Lorillard Inc. (NYSE:LO): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 10,254,125 shares with a market value of $1,116,366,617. This comprised 0.74% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 11,896,974 shares with a market value of $1,316,994,985. This comprised 1.07% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is 1,642,849. About Company: Lorillard, Inc. manufactures and sells cigarettes. The Company produces cigarettes for both the cigarettespub.biz/cigarettes-news/best-brands-of-the-premium-cigarettes-brands-manufacturer and discount segments of the domestic cigarette market for sale to distributors and retailers in the United States.

Philip Morris International Inc. (NYSE:PM): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 18,027,920 shares with a market value of $1,203,724,158. This comprised 0.8% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 18,846,436 shares with a market value of $1,175,640,698. This comprised 0.95% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is 818,516. About Company: Philip Morris International Inc., through its subsidiaries, affiliates and their licensees, produces, sells, distributes, and markets a wide range of branded cigarettes and tobacco products in markets outside of the United States of America. The Company’s portfolio comprises both international and local brands.

The Coca-cola Company (NYSE:KO): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 5,463,991 shares with a market value of $367,671,959. This comprised 0.24% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 8,446,927 shares with a market value of $570,674,367. This comprised 0.46% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is 2,982,936. About Company: The Coca-Cola Company manufactures, markets, and distributes soft drink concentrates and syrups. The Company also distributes and markets juice and juice-drink products. Coca-Cola distributes its products to retailers and wholesalers in the United States and internationally.

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc. (NASDAQ:GMCR): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 2,033,542 shares with a market value of $181,513,963. This comprised 0.12% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 5,227,965 shares with a market value of $485,887,080. This comprised 0.39% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is 3,194,423. About Company: Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. roasts Arabica coffees and offers various coffee selections. The Company’s products include single-origin, estate, certified organic, Fair Trade, signature blends, and flavored coffees sold under the Green Mountain Coffee Roasters brand. Green Mountain serves offices, supermarkets, and convenience stores, and operates a direct mail business.

Estee Lauder Companies Inc. (NYSE:EL): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 4,718,034 shares with a market value of $496,290,008. This comprised 0.33% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 5,056,740 shares with a market value of $444,184,023. This comprised 0.36% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is 338,706. About Company: The Estee Lauder Companies Inc. manufactures and markets a wide range of skin care, makeup, fragrance, and hair care products. The Company’s products are sold in countries and territories around the world.

Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE:PG): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 5,807,181 shares with a market value of $369,162,494. This comprised 0.24% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 5,828,926 shares with a market value of $368,271,546. This comprised 0.3% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is 21,745. About Company: The Procter & Gamble Company manufactures and markets consumer products in countries throughout the world. The Company provides products in the laundry and cleaning, paper, beauty care, food and beverage, and health care segments. Proctor & Gamble’s products are sold primarily through mass merchandisers, grocery stores, membership club stores, drug stores, and neighborhood stores.

Pepsico Inc. (NYSE:PEP): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 6,827,894 shares with a market value of $480,888,577. This comprised 0.32% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 5,667,974 shares with a market value of $350,847,599. This comprised 0.28% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is -1,159,920. About Company: PepsiCo, Inc. operates worldwide beverage, snack and food businesses. The Company manufacture or uses contract manufacturers, market and sell a variety of grain-based snacks, carbonated and non-carbonated beverages and foods in countries throughout the world.

Nike Inc. (NYSE:NKE): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 3,987,964 shares with a market value of $358,837,014. This comprised 0.24% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 4,057,134 shares with a market value of $346,925,537. This comprised 0.28% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is 69,170. About Company: NIKE, Inc. designs, develops, and markets athletic footwear, apparel, equipment, and accessory products for men, women, and children. The Company sells its products worldwide to retail stores, through its own stores, subsidiaries, and distributors.

Altria Group Inc. (NYSE:MO): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 11,876,401 shares with a market value of $313,655,749. This comprised 0.21% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 11,323,709 shares with a market value of $303,588,632. This comprised 0.25% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is -552,692. About Company: Altria Group, Inc. is a holding company. The Company, through subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes and other tobacco products, including cigars and pipe tobacco. Altria holds an interest in a brewery company.

Lululemon Athletica Inc. (NASDAQ:LULU): On 06/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 3,553,445 shares with a market value of $397,346,219. This comprised 0.26% of the total portfolio. On 09/30/2011, Ameriprise Financial reported holding 6,222,883 shares with a market value of $302,992,165. This comprised 0.25% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is 2,669,438. About Company: Lululemon Athletica Inc designs and retails athletic clothing. The Company produces fitness pants, shorts, tops and jackets for yoga, dance, running, and general fitness.

By Wall St. Cheat Sheet

wallstcheatsheet.com

Roll-your-own cigarette stores

A pack of name-brand cigarettes can run as high as $10 in New York state, and a carton about $80. In New York City, a pack can cost up to $14, and a carton $130.

In comparison, a pack of roll-your-own cigarettes can cost less than $4 in the state and a carton less than $30. With tightening budgets and a bad economy, more people are turning to roll-your-own machines in stores to get their cigarettes.

But $4 packs and $30 cartons might be short-lived. The fate of the roll-your-own machines in stores is up to the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati, which is trying to determine whether those roll-your-own machines manufacture cigarettes. If the court determines that they do, a federal tax on each pack of roll-your-own cigarettes will be added, making those cigarettes similar in price to name-brand ones.

Jonathan Behrins, an attorney at the Behrins Law Firm in Staten Island, said he believes the decision will apply to local, state and federal laws. Behrins represents Island Smokes, a roll-your-own shop, in a New York City case. “People in the industry all over the nation are holding their breath to this decision,” Behrins said.

Roll-your-own stores sell the tobacco and empty cigarette tubes to customers, and the rolling machine is available for customer use, said a spokesperson for Tobacco Express, which has a store in Camillus. The customers roll the cigarettes themselves for their own personal use.

“When you go to the supermarket and the coffee section, you buy the beans and put it in the grinding machine, and it turns into coffee,” the spokesperson said. “It is the same thing we do.”
2011-12-09-ap-Roll-Your-Own2.JPGView full sizeSeth Wenig / APLoose tobacco and a cigarette tin are displayed at Island Smokes in New York City. Customers buy loose tobacco and empty cigarette tubes, then use the machines in the store to make cigarettes at a fraction of the price of a regular pack.

As it stands now, these stores can sell cigarettes that are tax-free for the customer. This costs the government tax revenue, because manufactured cigarettes have additional taxes, Behrins said. For instance, in New York state, cigarette packs are taxed $4.35.

Rolling your own cigarettes by hand is legal, Behrins said. The government sees roll-your-own machines as manufacturing, because they are able to be produced in large quantities in a small amount of time, he said. Roll-your-own machines in stores can produce a carton of 200 cigarettes in eight minutes.

To be considered manufacturing, stores have to produce cigarettes to sell to the public, Behrins said. Stores with roll-your-own machines don’t manufacture cigarettes to sell. The decision can have serious ramifications for the industry, Behrins said.

If the court rules in favor of the government, the number of roll-your-own stores “popping up” will diminish, and the profitability of these cigarettes will begin to go down to the point that there won’t be many of them left, Behrins said.

The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance is reviewing the legal options with the state Attorney General’s Office, said Ed Walsh, press officer for the department.

BY Haley Behre

syracuse.com

Shoreline Sees Big Increase in Tobacco Sold to Underage Customers in 2011

Recent tobacco retailer inspections in Shoreline found six out of 49 retailers selling tobacco to underage teens in eight separate incidents.

Public Health-Seattle King County which conducted the stings with trained 15-17-year-old teens, says that’s startling reversal from inspections over the past five years, when a total of six violations (out of 200 inspections) were found over the entire period. In addition, two locations were found selling to minors twice in 2011. Overall, King County’s high retailer compliance rate has dropped over the past two years from 96 percent in 2009 to 88 percent in 2011.

The establishments cited are:

  • Top Tobacco — 16053 Aurora Ave N (sold twice)
  • Smoke Time — 19939 Ballinger Way NE (sold twice)
  • Safeway — 17202 15th Ave NE
  • 7-Eleven — 16920 15th Ave NE
  • Richmond Market — 640 NW Richmond Beach Road
  • Village Market Thriftway — 20036 Ballinger Way

“What’s concering to us is that we’re seeing a reversal in the trend of our inspections over the past five years,” said James Apa, a spokesman for Public Health. “Traditionally, Shoreline has done well.”

“To see eight violatioins in one year is concerning, particularly when you know 90 percent of current smokers become addicted before they’re 19 years old,” Apa said. “That’s why it’s so important to reach kids early and prevent them from getting started and prevent them from getting product or at least making it difficult to get product. That’s why it’s troubling to see more sales to kids.

Durga Shrestha, a clerk at Top Tobacco, on Aurora Ave. N. a store that had two underage sales, was one of two employees there who sold to a teen in the sting.

“I didn’t ask for ID,” said Shrestha, who characterized what happened as a mistake on his part.

Shrestha, who has worked at the store for three years, said the fines would come out of his paycheck.

Shrestha said he planned to take a class for first-time offenders offered by the liquor control board which addresses age verification for alcohol and tobacco sales. If he completes the class he can reduce the fine.

In Washington State, selling tobacco to a minor is prohibited by law and results in a fine for retailers of $100 for the first offense within two year period and are educated about selling tobacco responsibly. The fine for a clerk is $50. A second offense is a $300 fine. Repeat offenses beyond that result in fines up to $1,500 and the business may have their license to sell tobacco products suspended. Retailers refusing to sell tobacco to minors are congratulated in person and given an information packet. Because of the increased sales to minors, Public Health’s Tobacco Prevention Program will focus more inspections in Shoreline.

The high school students hired to do the inspections have identification and will provide it if asked.

“There are no tricks involved,” Apa said. “They have the product and go to purchase it without being asked for ID. If they are asked for ID they provide it and presumably they won’t be sold the product.”

Meanwhile, the tobacco industry has become creative in its business practices to increase sales.

“We’ve made progress over the past 10 years in reducing the impact of tobacco addiction in our community, but we need to keep this good work going,” said Dr. David Fleming, Director of Public Health — Seattle & King County. “As funding for proven tobacco prevention programs is eliminated statewide, the tobacco industry continues to find new ways to market products that appeal to kids.”

The tobacco industry has responded to tougher federal regulations around the marketing and advertising of cigarettes with new tobacco products that are attractive to youth, such as dissolvable tobacco that closely resembles gum, candy and breath strips, and cigars, cigarillos and snus (teabag-like pouches of tobacco) in flavors such as peach, chocolate, strawberry and grape.

Sales of tobacco to teens are a high concern because most adult tobacco addictions start in youth; 90 percent of current smokers became addicted before they were 19 years old. Overall, about a third of all kids who become regular smokers before adulthood will eventually die from smoking. Tobacco use is the leading cause of death in King County, leading to 1,990 deaths per year and $343 million in medical care costs, lost productivity and other expenses.

patch.com

Tobacco shops near schools on hit list

In a survey conducted by an NGO in city schools found that 82% of schools have tobacco and tobacco product selling shops in the radius of 100 yards. The sale of tobacco products in the radius of 100 yards is prohibited and punishable.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) hasplanned adrive to stop this menace.

Minister of state of FDA Satej Patil held a review meeting on Wednesday to take stock of the implementation of the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Regulation Act (COTPA) under which action is taken against the shopkeepers selling tobacco products in the vicinity of the schools. The vendors are punished with fine and the stock of the tobacco products is also seized.

The minister was apprised with the findings of the survey that has stated that of the 91 schools surveyed in the city, 75 had 219 tobacco shops in the restricted area. The shops were operational in the vicinity between 1 to 13 years.

It also has stated that 24% of the shops did not have the licence issued by the BMC. The survey revealed that 83% of shops did not display the warning which was mandatory to them under the act.
Patil has announced a drive between November 14 and January 25 across the state to ensure strict action against the shops.

He has roped in other departments including school education, public health, National Rural Health Mission for the effective implementation of the drive. Patil said that according to Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2010, girls and boys in the age group of 13 to 15 years, 19 and 8.3% become addicts. It also has revealed that 36.6%kids suffer from passive smoking.

The department will start helpline for the complaints related to the sell of tobacco products near schools.

dnaindia.com

Tobacco displays in shops attract Young People

According to a new investigation, funded by Cancer Research UK and published in Nicotine and Tobacco Research, younger cigarettes salesindividuals are more likely to take up smoking if they find tobacco displays in shops attractive and if they easily recall seeing the displays.

Investigators based at the University of Stirling, UK, interviewed approximately 950 non-smoking young individuals aged between 11-16 years from across the UK. Susceptibility to smoking, recall and attraction to tobacco displays in shops were assessed.

In order to determine their susceptibility to smoking, the authors asked if the participants had made a firm decision to not smoke or if they may smoke in the future.

Among the participants, 27% were classified as susceptible. Eight out of ten (81%) reported that they noticed the tobacco displays behind the counter, almost one in five paid close attention to the displays, one in four considered them to be eye-catching and one in eight thought the displays were attractive. They discovered that being attracted to the tobacco displays was positively linked with susceptibility.

Over 70% of participants supported removing shop displays and putting the tobacco out of sight.

Anne Marie Mackintosh, lead researcher, explained:

“Our findings show a link between the smoking susceptibility of young people and tobacco displays in shops. Demonstrating that young people who had never smoked appear vulnerable to the colorful and brightly lit tobacco displays is a real concern and reinforces the importance of putting those displays out of sight.”

In April 2010 across England and Wales, legislation to remove tobacco displays in supermarkets will come into force, and for smaller retail outlets in April 2015.

Jean King, Cancer Research UK’s director of tobacco control, commented:

“Tobacco advertising and marketing has been banned in the UK since 2002, but a loophole has meant that huge walls of tobacco have remained on display in nearly every corner store and shop across the country. Protecting young people from tobacco marketing is vital if we are to stop more young people from starting an addiction that kills half of all long term smokers. This research adds further evidence showing that putting tobacco out of sight is without a doubt the right move to make.”

By Grace Rattue
Medical News Today

Owner of Bull and Bear Tobacco files lawsuit in response to default notice

St. Charles, IL — Inside Bull and Bear Tobacco shop on a warm Wednesday cigarafternoon, a group of men lounged on leather couches smoking cigars and chatting softly among themselves.

It’s a typical sight any day the shop is open.

This day, however, was a little different. Suddenly, a woman walked in and began complaining openly to everyone about the “strong” smoke smell that she could detect from a nearby business.

She asked for a filtration system to be turned on. But it was. Fans were running, too.

“I’ve exhausted everything I could possibly do,” said Zita Harmon, who owns the premium tobacconist shop. “I don’t know what’s left to do in my control.”

Regardless, the complaints continue from some neighboring businesses. Since the building is part of a shopping center on Illinois Street, there are several neighbors. While complaints don’t often come as directly, the shop’s landlord, ShoDeen Management, has been hearing most of them, said Robert Minetz, the attorney for ShoDeen Management.

In St. Charles, Bull and Bear Tobacco is one of few shops where people can socialize while smoking after Illinois’ public smoking ban took effect in 2008.

But, depending on the outcome of a lawsuit, that may soon change.

After receiving a Notice of Default in February from ShoDeen telling Harmon she was in violation of her lease because of the odor, Harmon decided to sue the company asking them to uphold the lease that ends in 2014.

“(The letter) was the course of action to try and evict us,” she said.

Calls to Eric ShoDeen, the owner of ShoDeen Management, were not returned.

In Illinois, shops that make more than 80 percent of sales through tobacco products can allow smoking indoors. Because the shop has been open since 1995, it also operates under the grandfather clause, Harmon said. The clause allows smoking in the shop — despite a smoking ban in stores within shopping centers that share the same building

If Harmon moved, she’d have to get a stand-alone building —a much more expensive option, she said.
“It’s very stressful for me,” she said. “I’ve gone from being an excellent tenant to one they want to evict.”
In this economy, Harmon argues that St. Charles can’t lose any more retailers.

“I’m not going to be thrown out and risk losing my business,” she said.

Specialists have come out and said filtration systems are more than adequate for the space, according to Harmon.

On the other hand, Minetz argues that the filtration systems are inadequate and that the system is not always turned on. Because the shop is private property, Minetz said the management company is unable to preform a first-hand inspection.

While smoking is allowed inside, part of the lease also states that tenants cannot release toxic odors, he added.

“People on the second floor smell it and don’t like it,” he said. “Everyone knows it’s cigar smoke.”

The issue arose after a business office upstairs expanded about two years ago, according to Harmon’s attorney Tracy Stevenson. Since the office is now more directly above of the shop, the business owners have begun to complain, Stevenson said.

Those at the business, ALE Solutions, as well as the owner of a salon next door to the cigar shop declined to comment.

For Harmon, the odor comes not just from smoke, but also from the smell of unlit tobacco in the shop. In addition, Harmon said cigarette smoking is generally not allowed in the shop. There’s a big difference between cigarette and cigar smoke because of additives in cigarettes and the difference in tobacco quality, she said.

Over the last few years, however, complaints of the smell have increased, Minetz said.

“One witness said when things are locked up in the winter, the smell, odor, is much more noticeable,” he added.

But Harmon said the cold weather months are often when people come in to smoke cigars.

“Some people are just social smokers,” she said. “There aren’t many places left to do that.”

The next hearing will take place at the end of August. The judge will either decide to grant summary judgment or to schedule a trial.

Meanwhile, Harmon’s customers are still smoking at the shop.

“All of a sudden what we’ve been doing for 16 years is no longer permitted,” Harmon said.

By Elizabeth Stoever, estoever@mysuburbanlife.com
GateHouse News Service

Call for councils to remove £1bn in pension funds from tobacco firms

Doctors have claimed that councils are profiting from deaths through smoking by investing tens of millions of pounds of their pension funds in tobacco firms.

They have spoken out after freedom of information requests by a health campaigner in the south-west of England revealed that seven local authorities in that region have made investments of £103.8m. Cornwall council has the most: £24.5m in Imperial Tobacco, Altria Group and British American Tobacco. Devon county council has £20.8m, Gloucestershire holds £16.8m and Dorset has £14.7m.

“I am shocked by the size and extent of south-west local government pension investments in the tobacco industry and I am sure many of those contributing to the funds, as well as those receiving local government pensions, will be as well”, said Dr Gabriel Scally, the NHS regional director of public health for the south-west.

“If it were my pension contributions being invested in an industry whose only product line killed people in the numbers that die from tobacco, I would be absolutely horrified. As a doctor I think it would be completely unethical to have any part in it”, Scally added.

He urged councils to disinvest. “The tobacco industry is destructive, dishonest and deceitful. We need to put them out of business, not invest our hard-earned money in them.”

Dr Vivienne Nathanson, head of science and ethics at the BMA, backed his call. “It’s sad organisations are continuing to invest in tobacco, given that it shortens people’s lives. Obviously, it’s up to them what they do, but it would be good to see their employees putting pressure on them to invest elsewhere,” she said.

Councils across England are estimated to have about £1bn in such investments. If they keep them they could be accused of conflicts of interest when they assume legal responsibility for public health, including anti-smoking work, in 2013 as part of the coalition’s NHS shake-up.

Jo Walker, Gloucestershire county council’s director of finance, hinted at a rethink. “We are currently talking to other councils about the approach local government takes to investing in pension funds. We all have a responsibility to ensure we invest in companies which provide the best value for taxpayers and pensioners’ money,” she said.

By Denis Campbell
The Observer

Smokes, tobacco in shops to be hidden in NZ

Tobacco products and advertisements will have to be kept out of sight in shops under a law passed by Parliament yesterday.

All but three Act MPs voted for the Smoke-free Environments (Controls and Enforcement) Amendment Bill, which gives retailers until next July to hide away cigarettes and tobacco.

Associate Health Minister Tariana Turia said the tobacco industry used displays to prey on young people.

“No longer will people go into a dairy for milk and a newspaper only to be confronted by a wall of cigarettes.

“These ‘power walls’ not only encourage young people to try smoking, they also make it harder on those attempting to quit.”

Her next move is a bill for plain packaging for tobacco, saying it was another “biggie” that the tobacco industry strongly resists.

“It sends a very clear signal to the tobacco industry just how serious we are. In an ideal world this is not a product that should be sold at all. So I’m going to continue to press to pass legislation that hopefully means by 2025 there will be no tobacco in Aotearoa.”

Act MPs Sir Roger Douglas, Heather Roy and Hilary Calvert voted against the bill on the grounds of rational personal choice. However, all other MPs supported it.

Mrs Turia also acknowledged the role of Hone Harawira in forcing a select committee inquiry into the tobacco industry.

Mr Harawira had hoped to vote for the bill after being sworn into Parliament, but was denied the chance after the Speaker ejected him for delivering the wrong oath.

Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway called on New Zealand to be as brave as Australia in moving to plain packaging. Vending machines should also be targeted.

National’s Paul Hutchison said it was also good the bill covered herbal products which also could harm health.

The internet, duty free stores and sponsored events were all covered by the change in the law and there was evidence it would make a difference, he said.

Action on Smoking and Health director Ben Youdan welcomed the law, saying it was particularly pleasing that it got such widespread support in Parliament.

CBD STREET BAN RULED OUT

Auckland Council leaders have quickly snuffed out a councillor’s bid to have smokers banned from gathering in front of CBD buildings.

Penny Webster, who is acting mayor while Mayor Len Brown and Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse are overseas, said any ban would impact on Auckland’s image.

“What are we trying to say? Are we saying: ‘Well, Auckland is not a fun city’. What are you going to look at next? Sex between consenting adults in the bedroom?” she said.

Mrs Webster’s dismissal showed how upset council leaders were by community safety forum chairman George Wood saying in yesterday’s Herald that he wanted a smoking ban bylaw for streets outside CBD buildings, because other footpath users were breathing in their smoke.

Mr Wood was confident of getting support from councillors for a penalty-based ban. He welcomed Auckland Transport’s investigation into a bylaw to ban smoking in open bus shelters.

But he was disappointed when most forum members rebuffed his call for the promotion of smoke-free public places and for work towards a strategic commitment to a smoke-free city.

Councillor Cameron Brewer was concerned that smokers were being treated like lepers and pushed outside. Giving them nowhere to go would drive them back into the family home and family car.

“I think that’s more damaging to their family and friends than standing on Queen St.”

But councillor Richard Northey said people had the right to breathe without being subjected to passive smoke.

At some council events, like concerts in the Auckland Domain, people had no choice but to have someone smoking near them; smoking in public places should be discouraged.

– Wayne Thompson

WHAT DOES THE NEW LAW DO?

  • Bans advertising from shops.
  • Bans display of tobacco products.
  • Increases fines for those who sell to under-18s.

WHAT COULD BE NEXT?

  • Plain packaging for cigarettes – strongly resisted by the tobacco industry.

WHAT IS THE AIM?

  • Bill architect Tariana Turia wants tobacco use ended by 2025.

By Claire Trevett

Make-your-own-cigarettes shops rolling into region

roll you own

Craig Handel slaps a few ounces of tobacco onto a hand-cranked machine, twirls a small knob and he’s ready to light up.

The 66-year-old man from South Fayette hasn’t bought a pack of cigarettes in more than a year. Instead, he buys a carton of 200 empty cigarette tubes, a bag of tobacco, and he’s ready to roll.

After the initial $39 investment for a manual cigarette-making machine, it costs him about $24 per carton and a half-hour of his time to roll his own carton, compared to nearly $70 for a carton of Marlboros, his former brand of choice.

“I’ve been saving money hand-over-fist ever since I started rolling my own,” said Handel, a retired teacher. “It tastes the same, and there are no additives.”

Because smokers who roll their own cigarettes, either at home as Handel does or in roll-your-own stores, aren’t technically buying their smokes — they’re buying the tubes and tobacco that make up the cigarettes — they are able to avoid most state and federal excise taxes.

The roll-your-own industry is heating up as states attempt to increase cigarette taxes while loose cigar and multi-use tobacco remains relatively excise-free. There are several roll-your-own stores in the Pittsburgh area.

Government officials say they’re losing money, and in September, the federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau declared that shops with roll-your-own machines were manufacturers of tobacco products, a designation that would require them to get permits and pay taxes on the cigarettes produced. While cigarettes that a person rolls for personal use are exempt — and bulk tobacco already is taxed — the bureau said the personal-use exemption does not apply if the machine that rolls the cigarettes is under the control of a business.

The ruling has been challenged in a federal lawsuit filed by RYO, the machine vendor, and a shop in Fayette County.

“I’ll admit that I’m addicted to cigarettes,” said Gary Volpe, 33, of Moon. “But I figure that if I’m going to smoke, I might as well smoke better-quality cigarettes at a lower price.”

Unlike off-the-shelf cigarettes, cigar and multi-use tobacco used in roll-your-own cigarettes are additive free. Many smokers said they prefer the taste to their former brand. Off-the-shelf cigarettes contain nearly 600 additives such as carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrogen cyanide and ammonia.

“It kind of tastes the same, but it doesn’t make my throat hurt like before,” said Stacy Reed, 53, of Carnegie.

Customers at The Smoke Stack in Moon last week lined up at three roll-your-own machines in the basement of a small building off University Boulevard. There, customers can pick their strength and flavor tobacco, their cigarette tube and then wait their turn to use an automated machine that will roll an entire carton in about 10 minutes.

The machines — about the size of a large air conditioning unit — can save customers up to 60 percent off the cost of a carton, said Josh Egal, the store’s co-owner.

“The customer is coming in, giving up their time and energy to buy a bulk product and renting the machine,” Egal said. “We’re giving them an option to buy cigarettes at a lower price, but with work involved.”

Egal said his average customer is between 40 and 55, although many are senior citizens on fixed incomes. Many younger customers, he said, prefer to mix blends of tobacco for a custom taste — something they can’t do with off-the-shelf cigarettes.

The machines, purchased from RYO Machine Rental in Youngstown, Ohio, cost between $20,000 and $30,000. The Smoke Stack charges $11 for each use, plus the cost of tobacco and the tubes. A carton of cigarettes totals less than $30 and saves customers about 60 percent, Egal said.

At Smoker Friendly in Pine, manager Dyanna Coholich said the roll-your-own has become more popular since the federal government increased a per-pack levy on cigarettes by 62 cents to $1 in 2009 and the state increased the tax on cigarettes from $1.35 to $1.60 per pack in 2010.

While Smoker Friendly doesn’t have the automatic machines, the clean store with a smoking lounge, cigar humidor and pipe room does sell manual cigarette-making machines.

Coholich, who was recently earned the designation of certified retail tobacconist from the International Premium Cigar & Pipe Retailers Association, said smokers can roll a carton of 200 cigarettes in about an hour. Despite the time spent making cigarettes, the cheapest manual machine costs just $8, which saves customers money in the long-run.

“It’s definitely an area of the business that’s thriving right now,” she said. “Rolling your own makes smoking more economical.”

By Adam Brandolph, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Pittsburghlive

Grisly labels not so scary for cigarette sales

RICHMOND, Va. — The nation’s top tobacco companies’ sales aren’t expected to go up in smoke despite new grisly warning labels that are set to appear on U.S. cigarettes packs next year.

The graphic labels, which were released in June by the Food and Drug Administration and include an image of rotting teeth and gums, will cause a decline of less than one percent in overall U.S. tobacco revenues in 2013, according to a recent analysis by research firm IBISWorld.

An average person smokes fifteen cigarettes a day at a cost of about $1,500 per year, which translates to about $300 million in lost revenue. That’s only a fraction of the estimated $43.8 billion in revenue for the tobacco industry in 2013, the firm’s calculation show.

The analysis, however, does not take into account the cost of redesigning and printing new cigarette packages, the number of people who won’t start smoking because of the warnings, or the smokers who cut down on their habit.

“Gradually, the warnings could impact the smoking population,” said IBISWorld cigarette and tobacco industry analyst Mary Gotaas. “But in the near term, it won’t have much of an impact.”

The nine warning labels are required by federal law to take up half of the pack __ both front and back __ by the fall of 2012. The labels, which represent the biggest change in cigarette packs in the U.S. in 25 years, also include images of the corpse of a dead smoker, diseased lungs, a smoker wearing an oxygen mask and a man wearing an “I Quit” T-shirt.

The warnings must also appear in advertisements and constitute 20 percent of each ad, and cigarette makers will have to run all nine labels on a rotating basis. The FDA estimates that the labels will cut the number of smokers by 213,000 in 2013, with a smaller additional reduction through 2031.

Aside from the potential to get people to quit smoking— or prevent them from starting __ the labels also could have a huge marketing effect for cigarette makers by making their brand names less important, said Deborah Mitchell, executive director of the Center for Brand and Product Management at the University of Wisconsin.

Being unable to differentiate cigarette packs, Mitchell said, consumers will care less about what brand they’re smoking, and more about how much it will cost them. That’s a potential concern for Marlboro, the nation’s top-selling cigarette, and its owner Richmond-based Altria Group Inc., parent company of the nation’s largest cigarette maker, Philip Morris USA.

“A great brand like Marlboro, it’s like they cast this spell,” Mitchell said, referring to the brand’s cowboy mythology. “If the spell is broken, for example, with this really negative packaging … all at once, Marlboro is just another brand of tobacco.”

Requirements to include the warnings on all advertising also will likely force tobacco companies be more creative in their marketing.

In some countries where more graphic warning labels were introduced, tobacco companies sold split packs so smokers could break the pack in half so one side didn’t have the labels, sleeves were made to cover the warnings, and sales of cigarette cases spiked, said Michael Cummings, chair of the Roswell Park Cancer Institute’s Department of Health Behavior in New York.

Despite the estimated minimal impact on revenue, in a federal lawsuit, some of the major companies argue that the warnings will relegate their cigarette brand names to the bottom half of the cigarette package, making it difficult or impossible to see. Oral arguments are set for July 27 in federal appeals court,

In comments to the FDA, some tobacco companies argued the “shock and awe” of the labels have been used in numerous ideological debates like when anti-abortion protesters display photographs of aborted fetuses or animal-rights activists display photographs of mutilated animals.

“Although such images illustrate actual effects of abortions and actual animal treatment, no one would contend that they are ‘purely factual and uncontroversial,'” Reynolds American Inc., parent company of America’s second-largest cigarette maker, R.J. Reynolds; No. 3 cigarette maker Lorillard Inc.; and No. 4 cigarette company Commonwealth Brands Inc., told the FDA. The companies are part of the lawsuit that deals in part with the legality of the new labels.

U.S. District Judge Joseph H. McKinley Jr. in Kentucky in January 2010 overturned two of the marketing restrictions challenged in the lawsuit, including a ban on color and graphics in most tobacco advertising. The judge did, however, uphold most of the new marketing restrictions, including the new cigarette warning labels.

Even tobacco companies that are not a part of the lawsuit argue that the labels might cross the line of social responsibility. While it supports federal regulation of the tobacco industry, Altria Group, which is not a party to the federal lawsuit, said in comments to the FDA that certain provisions, including the warning labels “exceed constitutional limits.”

“If the warnings are designed to disgust, to frighten, or to persuade on the theory that adult smokers should be encouraged to change their behavior notwithstanding their awareness of the risk, then such warnings are likely to be unconstitutional,” the company wrote.

Challenges over the labels are likely to make it to the nation’s highest court, which has recently shown interest in more protection of commercial speech, said Chip English, a constitutional lawyer in Washington.

“Leaving aside whether these pictures are accurate or not, it’s going to be much easier for the government to make an argument … that the government has a long time, scientific basis for saying tobacco is harmful,” English said.

By Michael Felberbaum
By galvestondailynews

Imperial Tobacco Appeal Fails To Overturn UK Cigarette Vending Ban

LONDON – Imperial Tobacco Group PLC (Bristol, England) reports that it has lost its appeal of the United Kingdom’s new prohibition of cigarette vending. The vending ban becomes effective in October.

Great Britain’s Court of Appeal upheld a December decision by the High Court that rejected the legal challenge by Imperial subsidiary Sinclair Collis (Wolverhampton, England) to provisions of the 2009 UK Health Act that forbids the sale of tobacco through vending machines.

Britain’s National Association of Cigarette Machine Operators, which represents companies that manufacture and place tobacco venders in the UK, has said that its 55 member companies provide 580 jobs generating £275 million annually.

After the Parliament approved the vending ban, NACMO northern chairman Rod Bullough explained that the group “would support any genuine attempt to reduce smoking among young people, but we feel our industry is being made a scapegoat. The ban will wipe out a legitimate business sector and result in considerable job losses, as well as being another kick in the teeth for the pubs and clubs.”

Smoking has been banned in public places, including restaurants and taverns, since July 2007.

Other provisions of the Health Act include a ban on tobacco product advertising, except under certain limited circumstances, in large retail outlets starting in April, 2012, and extending to all shops in April 2015.

The UK government also is considering a requirement that tobacco products be sold only in unbranded packaging.

Nick Montano
Nick@vendingtimes.net

Westford tobacco sales ban pinches neighboring towns

As Westford tobacco users prepare for July 1, the day they can no longer purchase tobacco products in pharmacies, health departments in surrounding communities are deciding how to proceed.

Westford’s Board of Health voted last week to amend its regulations governing the sale of tobacco products to prohibit their sale in any health-care institution. The town adopted the language the city of Boston put in place in December 2008. Westford is the 10th community in Massachusetts to enact the regulation.

Chelmsford and Lowell are sister communities to Westford in the Upper Merrimack Valley Public Health Coalition, a group of seven cities and towns that joined together in the wake of Sept. 11 for emergency preparedness. The health directors in both Chelmsford and Lowell said earlier this week that Westford’s action does not mean their communities will take similar action.

Because Chelmsford and Westford have worked together on tobacco-control grants, Chelmsford Health Director Richard Day said the two towns’ regulations mirror one another. Chelmsford has not amended its regulations, but Day said he expects his town’s Board of Health to discuss the issue now that Westford has moved forward.

“We clearly realize that as one town does it, we need to look at it to see if it makes any sense,” Day said. “One difficulty that has always existed with tobacco is that local towns consistently and regretfully have had to take the first step on tobacco control becausethe state never does. The state always waits to see how the wind blows in cities and towns and waits to see if there’s any flak from local regulations before it does anything statewide.”

Even though the coalition, which also includes Lowell, Tyngsboro, Dracut, Billerica and Tewksbury, exists to discuss how the communities would respond to things like a pandemic or a smallpox outbreak, Day said the group also fosters dialogue among the cities and towns on other health issues.

Frank Singleton, Lowell’s health director, said the city is partnering with Lawrence on a tobacco-control grant application with the state. If the cities receive the grant, Singleton said it’s conceivable Lowell’s Board of Health would consider amending its regulations to prohibit the sale of tobacco products in pharmacies. As of now, however, Singleton said the issue has not been brought before the board.

Westford adopted regulations that define health-care institutions as hospitals, clinics, health centers, pharmacies, drugstores, and doctors’ and dentists’ offices. While most of those entities do not sell cigarettes, pharmacies and drug stores such as CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens do.

Tobacco products, according to the regulation that Westford adopted, are defined as “any substance containing tobacco leaf, including but not limited to cigarettes, cigars, pipe, tobacco, snuff, chewing tobacco, and dipping tobacco.”

Singleton said a fundamental problem with the regulation comes from its definition of health-care facilities.

“What is a pharmacy?” he said. “Is it a standalone building? Selling tobacco, which is a legal product, in a pharmacy is not the same as a hospital or nursing home. Those are health-care facilities.”

Taking it a step further, Singleton said that the pharmacy practice has evolved over the years. “Pharmacists used to grind stuff, but now they take bottles down and count pills. Drug stores are no longer drug stores. They are convenience stores that sell drugs.”

Singleton questioned how the state can regulate the sale of tobacco in pharmacies, but not in supermarkets that have a pharmacy counter, such as select Stop and Shop locations and Walmart.

“A pharmacy is no more a health-care facility anymore than it is a sex shop because it sells condoms,” he said.

By Ed Hannan, ehannan@lowellsun.com

Cigarette sales in Japan drop 10%

TOKYO – Sales of cigarettes in Japan in fiscal 2010 plunged 10.1 percent from a year earlier to 210.2 billion cigarettes, marking the Japan Cigarettes salelargest fall on record, due to a sharp rise in prices, the Tobacco Institute of Japan said Friday.

The decline in sales, the sharpest since comparable date became available in 1990, stemmed from weakening demand as cigarette prices spiked following the imposition of the largest-ever tobacco tax hike on Oct. 1.

The sales value in the business year ended March increased 2.0 percent from the year before to 3,616.3 billion yen, the institute said.

By cigarette brand, Seven Stars topped the ranking for the third straight year, accounting for 4.8 percent of the sales volume.

Plainly put, cigarette packaging matters

This week our government committed itself to the removal, albeit slowly, of cigarette displays in shops. But plain packaging on cigarettes has been delayed for further consultation.

The Unite union is unimpressed. It represents 6,000 people in tobacco production and distribution, and put out a statement: “Switching to plain packaging will make it easier to sell illicit and unregulated products, especially to young people.” This, the union added, “may increase long-term health problems”.

Tory MP Philip Davies said: “Plain packaging for cigarettes would be gesture politics … it would have no basis in evidence.”

Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but not, sadly, their own facts. Cigarette packaging has been used for brand-building and sales expansion, and that is bad enough; but it has also been used for many decades to sell the crucial lie that cigarettes which are “light”, “mild”, “silver”, and the rest, are somehow safer.

This is one of the most important con tricks of all time: people base real decisions on it, even though low-tar cigarettes are just as bad for you as normal cigarettes, as we have known for decades. Manufacturers’ gimmicks, like the holes on the filter beside your fingers, confuse laboratory smoking machines, but not people. Smokers who switch to lower-tar brands compensate with larger, faster, deeper inhalations, and by smoking more cigarettes.

The collected data from a million people shows that those who smoke low-tar and “ultra-light” cigarettes get lung cancer at the same rate as people who smoke normal cigarettes. They are also, paradoxically, less likely to give up smoking.

So the “light”, “pale” and “mild” packaging sells a lie. But do people know this? In data from two population-based surveys, a third of smokers believed incorrectly that “light” cigarettes reduce health risks, and were less addictive (it’s 71% in China (pdf)). A random telephone-digit survey of 2,120 smokers found they believed on average that “ultra lights” convey a 33% reduction in risk. A postal survey of 500 smokers found a quarter believed “light” cigarettes are safer. A school-based questionnaire of 267 adolescents found once again, as you’d expect, that they incorrectly believed “light” cigarettes to be healthier and less addictive.

Where do all these incorrect beliefs come from? Careful manipulation by the tobacco industry, as you can see for yourself, in their internal documents available for free online. They explicitly planned to deter quitters with “mild” products, which were made to seem safer and less addictive.

But more than 50 countries, including the UK, have now banned a few magic words like “light” and “mild”. So is that enough? No. A survey of 15,000 people in four countries (pdf) found that after the UK ban, there was a brief dip in false beliefs, but by 2005 we bounced back to having the same false beliefs about “safer-looking” brands as the US.

This is because brand packaging continues to peddle these lies. A street-interception survey (pdf) from 2009 of 300 smokers and 300 non-smokers found that people think packages with “smooth” and “silver” in the names are safer, and that cigarettes in packaging with lighter colour, and a picture of a filter, were also safer.

Of course tobacco companies know this (pdf). As the Philip Morris tobacco company said in an internal document, entitled Marketing New Products in a Restrictive Environment: “Lower delivery products tend to be featured in blue packs. Indeed, as one moves down the delivery sector, then the closer to white a pack tends to become. This is because white is generally held to convey a clean, healthy association.”

If you’re in doubt of the impact this can have, “brand imagery” studies show that when participants smoke the exact same cigarettes presented in lighter coloured packs, or in packs with “mild” in the name, they rate the smoke as lighter and less harsh, simply through the power of suggestion. These illusory perceptions of mildness, of course, further reinforce the false belief that the cigarettes are healthier.

But these aren’t the only reasons why banning a few words from packaging isn’t enough. A study of 600 adolescents, for example, found that plain packages increase the noticeability, recall, and credibility of warning labels.

There’s no real doubt that the extended, complex, interlocking branding and packaging machinations of cigarette companies play a big role in misleading smokers about the risks, by downplaying them, and sadly nothing from Unite – for shame – or some Tory MP will change that.

If you don’t care about this evidence, or you think jobs are more important than people killed by cigarettes, or you think libertarian principles are more important than both, then that’s a different matter. But if you say the evidence doesn’t show evidence of harm from branded packaging, you are simply wrong.

By Ben Goldacre
The Guardian

Displaying tobacco in shops should be consigned to history

The government will soon decide whether cigarette displays in shops should be banned. Health campaigners insist they should, believing this will reduce the number of young people smoking, while those who run convenience shops oppose the move, saying it will cost up to £1,000 to remove the displays and to fit under-the-counter trays to hold tobacco products. This, they warn, will increase queues in shops, levels of theft and smuggling.

Whether a ban deters young people from smoking is fiercely contested. Several Canadian provinces that introduced a ban have witnessed a significant fall in youth smoking. But provinces that did not introduce a ban have also seen falls.

What is clear is that in the Canadian example the smoking lobby vigorously resisted the move, advancing the same arguments against the ban now being made here, ostensibly by shopkeepers but with the tacit support, both financial and administrative, of the big tobacco companies.

The assertion that compliance with the ban will result in thousands of shopkeepers going out of business must be treated with suspicion. Even those who oppose the ban estimate the true cost of compliance will be only in the hundreds of pounds, a fraction of an average shop’s annual turnover.

Perhaps the most useful exercise for the UK government is to look to Ireland, which introduced a similar ban in 2009. Independent research confirmed that the ban did not result in a loss of income for Irish retailers, while there was a dramatic decline in children’s awareness that tobacco was sold in shops. Support for the ban also rose among the general population after it was introduced.

The researchers concluded the ban helped to “de-normalise” tobacco in the minds of children. The truth, long recognised by the tobacco industry, is that these displays are just another form of advertising and so, in the case of cigarettes, should be consigned to history.

Study Shows Tobacco Retail Proximity to Schools

BUFFALO, N.Y. — For years the tobacco industry has argued that efforts to ban tobacco advertising near schools would constitute a total ban on tobacco advertising in urban areas.

But public health researchers at the University at Buffalo and Roswell Park Cancer Institute have presented research that shows this is not the case in Buffalo and Niagara Falls, N.Y. The UB and RPCI researchers presented their study results in a poster session on Feb. 18 at the annual meeting of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco held in Toronto.

They found that tobacco outlets in Buffalo and Niagara Falls are more concentrated around elementary and secondary schools; the outlets (convenience stores, groceries, delis, etc.) also are more densely concentrated in lower-income areas, which may be exacerbating tobacco-use disparities between socioeconomic groups.

According to the tobacco industry’s argument, the area around schools in urban areas comprises a significant percentage of land area and population that would be off-limits to tobacco advertisements if an advertising ban were in place.

“The tobacco industry has stated that a tobacco advertising ban within a 1,000-foot buffer zone near schools in urban areas would be equivalent to a total ban on advertising and would, therefore, be unconstitutional on First Amendment grounds,” explains Andrea Licht, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine in the UB School of Public Health and Health Professions. Licht is first author on the study.

“However, based on our analyses, a law banning tobacco advertising within 1,000 feet of schools would affect fewer than half of their outlets,” she says. “We also found that only about one-third of the population potentially lives within this 1,000-foot buffer zone, so such an advertising ban would not act like a ‘de facto’ ban, as industry has claimed.”

During 2009-10, the years covered by the study, there were 350 tobacco retail outlets and 104 schools located in the City of Buffalo.

The study found that 17.3 percent of schools in Buffalo have a tobacco retail outlet located within 500 feet, while 49.9 percent have a tobacco retail outlet located within 1,000 feet and 71.2 percent of schools have a tobacco retail outlet located within 1,500 feet.

In the City of Niagara Falls, there were 65 tobacco retail outlets and 15 schools. Of those 15 schools, 13.3 percent have a tobacco retail outlet located within 500 feet, 33.3 percent have a tobacco retail outlet within 1,000 feet and 46.7 percent of schools have a tobacco retail outlet within 1,500 feet.

“The proximity to schools is significant because smoking patterns are almost exclusively developed during the adolescent and teen years,” Licht explains.

“These outlets near the schools and in lower-income areas may be more likely to be frequented by adolescents, young adults and other disadvantaged populations,” says Licht. “Since availability, accessibility and the perception that smoking is normal are all associated with higher youth smoking rates, it is likely that advertising bans near schools may serve to reduce youth smoking initiation.”

Tobacco outlet information for the study was collected and analyzed at RCPI for, and with, the help of the Erie-Niagara Tobacco-Free Coalition.

Co-authors with Licht on the research are Anthony G. Billoni, director of the Erie-Niagara Tobacco-Free Coalition; K. Michael Cummings, PhD, UB professor in the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine and chair of the Department of Health Behavior at RPCI; Andrew J. Hyland, PhD, UB research associate professor in the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine and associate member in the Department of Health Behavior at RPCI; and Deborah Pettibone, media specialist with the Erie-Niagara Tobacco-Free Coalition.

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, a flagship institution in the State University of New York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus. UB’s more than 28,000 students pursue their academic interests through more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of the Association of American Universities.

ByEllen Goldbaum: goldbaum@buffalo.edu, 716-645-4605

New tobacco store rolls out fresh ideas

With a pack of cigarettes costing nearly double the high price of gas and big tobacco companies making their product even worse for users’ health, smokers are stuck between a company that just wants to them to stay addicted and a government that depends on tax revenue from the product.

Joining a growing movement, the four-month-old Tobacco Source in Margate has found quick and growing success selling chemical-free, freshly rolled cigarettes at a price that probably hasn’t been seen since the 1980s.

Customers at the store select from several types of tobacco and which of three types of cigarette tube they’d like it packed in, paying $24.98 for the materials to make 200 cigarettes, before going two doors down in the same shopping center where they roll all 200 of them in less than 10 minutes, said store manager Jack Swager.

The higher-quality, lower-price smokes have quickly given the store a base of about 2,500 regular customers, Swager said, with a dozen or more new faces showing up every day.

With patience and interest, he said has watched people flock to the business simply because they feel that what Tobacco Source offers is worth it, and the store already is expanding, with a second location set to open in North Lauderdale in a few weeks.

The healthier, natural smoking option, is proving to be surprisingly popular, Swager said.

“People who can afford to pay for big brand cigarettes don’t want to incur the price,” Swager said. “People will literally sit here for as long as an hour, waiting for the machine, and you never hear them complain. It’s amazing.”

Where did the idea come from?

This is a relatively new concept nationwide, it’s open in several states but the whole the thing has only been in existence less than a year. The idea was developed by a collective of tobacco farmers looking for a place to sell. The [tobacco] industry used to buy from indie farmers but now they grow their own, so the farmers got together with an entity to sell it.

Why hasn’t this kind of store been opened before?

I don’t believe it was feasible. People didn’t want to take the time and effort to roll them one at a time. But with the machines we have it is more timely and cost effective. Also, I think people underestimate the cost. They’re frustrated with the taxes and they’re frustrated with the FDA and the chemicals that companies are allowed to put in the tobacco. There’s a movement in this country to get away from the poison and things we deem not healthy – people don’t want it any more.

Is it fair to call this a healthier way to smoke?

Absolutely. In the last year…they started to put fire safety chemicals that help put the cigarette out that’s made from something used in carpet glue. It’s considered not toxic unless put near high temperatures or high flames, and then its considered toxic. And it tastes horrible…Why would anybody incur the expense to add all these chemicals if it doesn’t enhance the flavor of the tobacco? That and the other things they’re putting in them are only there to enhance the addiction. The physical addiction to nicotine is within 72 hours.

You also had some recent legal issues with operating the store?

The issue was that we had product and machines in the same space [so] that made us a manufacturer…We didn’t want to be the example that got raided so we closed down and opened a second storefront, moved the machines to the other storefront in a separate business and kept the tobacco here. So you buy the tobacco here, and then go there to rent the machine from a separate corporation and business. It’s similar to a micro-brew business where you can produce your own beer there – you can drink your beer, but they can’t sell you any beer.

How many kinds of tobacco do you carry?

We have 11 different kinds of tobacco, from very, very light to full flavors. We have organic tobacco. We have mentholated tobacco. We have a full-flavored tube, a light tube that limits the amount of smoke you take in and then we have mentholated tubes [for the tobacco]. All of our tobacco is domestically grown, it’s all natural and chemical free. Believe it or not, the old-timers appreciate this the most – they remember the time before all the chemicals were added to cigarettes.

By Stephen Feller, sfeller@tribune.com

Effect of possible workplace smoking ban in Springfield

SPRINGFIELD — Should people be able to light up in restaurants, bars or the workplace?

That’s the question voters in Springfield will likely decide come April. While supporters say it’s to better our lives, some worry it could threaten their livelihood.

“This is a wall of our pipe tobacco blends,” explained Christian Hutson, owner of the Just for Him tobacco shop.

Hutson points to a wall where there are dozens and dozens of unique tobacco blends. Many of them are customized right here in the store and sold in town and all over the world.

“I think this week we shipped to France, Croatia, Romania, Russia and Australia,” said Hutson.

Hutson and his employees do the specialized blending.

Business as usual at the tobacco shop; though, could soon be a thing of the past if voters approve a measure in April that would ban smoking in the workplace.

“If my employees can’t smoke tobacco on the job, which is what I pay them to do, then how do we develop our products?” asked Hutson.

The group, One Air Alliance, that collected the necessary signatures and delivered them last month to the city clerk to get the question on the ballot says workers are some of the very people they’re protecting.

“With people that have to go work everyday and be around secondhand smoke for 8 hours at a time, you can wash it out of your clothes, but you can’t wash it out of your lungs or heart,” explained Josh Garrett.

The measure would stop smoking in all private clubs and workplaces including bars, restaurants and tobacco shops.

Proponents say it’s a matter of public health.

“We have a right to breath clean air and that is the one thing that we are talking about here,” said Katie Towns-Jeter, Springfield-Greene County Health Department.

But Hutson says his employees and customers– who come in daily to enjoy a stogie or a pipe– are all adults and should have the right to smoke at his shop.

If the measure passes, Hutson says he will fight it because he’s worried about what will happen to his livelihood. “If I can’t smoke in here, it’s not like 24 hours later I’ll be out of business. I’ll slowly wither away.”

Hutson says nearby cities have invited him to move his shop into their towns, but he would prefer to stay in Springfield where his business has been for nearly 22 years– even before he owned the store.

by Paula Morehouse, KY3 News

Historic Jeanie’s Smoke Shop reopens

Jeanie’s Smoke Shop is back in business.

The popular downtown Salt Lake City tobacco store that closed its doors in mid-2010 has reopened under new owners Luay Alawi and Raad Alkamel, who vow to maintain the same look and feel of the historic Utah establishment that dated back to the 1940s.

“We started thinking about reopening Jeanie’s as soon as we saw the ‘for lease’ sign on the building,” said Alkamel, who, along with his partner, owns the nearby Smoke Break Hooka Outlet. “Jeanie’s had been a part of downtown for many, many years, and we didn’t want to see it go away.”

Longtime owner Gary Klc (pronounced Kelch) closed Jeanie’s on June 30, the day before a state tobacco tax hike went into effect. Klc said he couldn’t come up with $125,000 on July 1 to cover the higher tax on his existing inventory, which he described as the largest of any tobacco retailer in the state.

Klc’s late father launched the family business in the 1940s when he bought out the old United Cigars store on State Street. The tobacco store changed its name several times throughout the years — finally to Jeanie’s, in honor of Gary Klc’s mother.

Alawi said he and his partner have a verbal agreement with Klc that allows them to use the Jeanie’s Smoke Shop name for one year. “After that, it will be up to Gary on whether we will be allowed to continue to use it,” he said.

Klc couldn’t be reached for comment.

The store’s new owners said they are working hard to set up the shop the way customers remember.

“Everything is in the same place as it was — the loose tobacco, the cigars and the pipes,” Alawi said. “And when Jeanie’s longtime customers come in, we are asking them what products they want us to carry in the store.”

At least one thing will be different, though.

Arley Curtz of Curtz Handmade Pipes and Pipe Repair, who worked at Jeanie’s for years, said the new store’s owners approached him

Raad Alkamel and Jeanie's Smoke Shop.

Raad Alkamel is one of the new owners of Jeanie's Smoke Shop.

about setting up there again. “I bought all the equipment I was using from Gary, and I’m now working out of my home. So that is something I don’t think I’m going to do.”

Alawi conceded that successfully operating Jeanie’s will be a challenge, particularly since the recent increase in the state’s tobacco tax seems to be leading many Utah smokers to venture out of state to purchase their cigarettes and cigars.

Jeanie’s customer Dennis Lemons, who was waiting for a bus outside the store at 156 S. State Street, said it was a sad day when the shop closed. “It is nice to see that it has reopened. Downtown Salt Lake City can certainly use all the help it can get.”

Alkamel said like many of Jeanie’s longtime customers, he and his partner looked upon the store with fondness and a sense of nostalgia.

“When I came to Salt Lake City in 1994, I bought my first pack of cigarettes at Jeanie’s,” he said.

The Salt Lake Tribune

World’s smallest cellphone jammer looks like a pack of cigarettes

Sometimes you just want to drown out the noise around you — starting with cellphones. While cellphones are great communication cigarette cellphone jammerdevices, people who go overboard, spilling their life stories out loud in public tend to become annoying. Silence them with the world’s smallest cellphone jammer.

Disguised as a pack of cigarettes, the so-called “world’s smallest cellphone jammer” disables a cluster of frequencies, mainly GSM and 3G signals within a 32-feet radiius — turning crystal clear babbling into ear-splitting static. This could come in handy when trying to block out mommy from shouting at daddy for the umpteenth time. Price for quiet? $46.

In the U.S. cellphone jammers are illegal, with anyone caught with one punishable with a fine of $11,000 and up to a year in jail time. I don’t know what the laws are in your neck of the woods, so consider yourself warned before hitting that “Add to Cart” button.

Tobacco shops developing a ‘cigarette haven’

Where there’s smoke there’s profit in Westfall and Matamoras.

Smoke Shop in Westfall

Smoke Shop in Westfall

In a two-mile strip of Route 6/209, from Westfall to the Port Jervis bridge, there are eight — count ’em, eight — tobacco shops, with two more on the way.

New Yorkers looking to escape that state’s $4.35-a-pack cigarette tax cross the Delaware River for Pennsylvania’s per-pack cigarette tax of $1.60.

“There’s lots of call for it. This is cigarette haven, I guess,” said Matamoras Mayor Richard Gassmann. “I wish we had a variety of businesses, but we don’t.”

Tobacco King, next to the Westfall Fire Department, opened last week, and manager Jimmy Patel is confident the business will do well.

“Everyone (all tobacco shops) will survive. This is the golden period to make a profit,” Patel said. He compared tobacco shops to gas stations. Consumers will go to the one in the neighborhood offering the lowest price, even if the savings are just pennies.

If Pennsylvania were to raise its cigarette tax, Patel says the “golden age” would be over. Pennsylvania legislators talked about raising the tax by 10 cents a pack this summer, but it didn’t happen.

The glut of cigarette shops, though, has its downside: A robber armed with a handgun took more than $4,000 in cash from Smokers Choice last week. Pike County District Attorney Ray Tonkin warned of a herbal incense being sold in some shops that is really a dangerous synthetic marijuana. And the tax difference encourages organized smuggling rings to buy at low prices and sell across the border.

“If you talk to smugglers, it’s a piece of cake. The profit margin is good, the penalties are low and it beats selling cocaine,” said Andrew Hyland, research scientist for the Department of Health Behavior at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, N.Y. A van loaded with cigarettes could make a $30,000 profit when sold in a higher tax area, Hyland said.

A new smoke shop is going into the former Hollywood Video store in the Staples plaza. Inside, shelves and some signs are already in place, but the project was issued a stop-work order by Westfall Building Inspector Shawn Bolles because the building had started without a permit. When it opens, it will be the first cigarette store within walking distance of the campus of the Delaware Valley elementary, middle and high schools.

A study by the Stanford Prevention Research Center shows higher rates of smoking at schools with tobacco outlets within walking distance.

“A concentration of tobacco stores in a community makes smoking seem more common and safer than it really is,” said Lisa Henriksen, a senior research scientist at the center.

Another smoke shop is going into the recently renovated building on the corner of Second and Pennsylvania avenues in Matamoras, in the former Robert Hansen Matamoras Garage Auto Repair, according to Gassmann. Three cigarette shops are across the street from this spot.

Paul Gluck, owner of Wooden Treasures in Matamoras, doesn’t mind the tobacco stores.

“They go to New Jersey for gas, Pennsylvania for cigarettes and sometimes they stop in here to shop,” he said.

By Beth Brelje