ASH Daily News for 12 September 2016



  • Boom in ‘vaping’ sees UK’s first ever e-cigarette liquid production factory
  • Yorkshire: Smoking ban outside council buildings being considered
  • Ireland: Ex-garda chief to stamp out illegal cigarettes
  • US: Tobacco Firms Pour Millions Into California Cigarette Tax Fight
  • US: Congressman who took $42,000 from tobacco industries, pushes to allow free tobacco for troops
  • Sri Lanka: Finance ministry officials blocking 90% tax on tobacco
  • Bangladesh: Huge blaze at BAT packaging factory in kills at least 26

Boom in ‘vaping’ sees UK’s first ever e-cigarette liquid production factory

E-cigarette company Totally Wicked has opened a factory in Blackburn, Lancashire, to produce over 10 million bottles of e-liquid every year.

While the UK rise in vaping has also led to an increase in the number of new independent vape shops, with 334 opening last year.

Source: The Express – 09 September
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Yorkshire: Smoking ban outside council buildings being considered

Smoking outside council buildings in Calderdale could be banned if recommendations to clamp down on smoking are approved.

The council will consider proposals today which would also see the removal of smoking shelters outside council buildings by 2017.

Source: ITV – 12 September 2016
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Ireland: Ex-garda chief to stamp out illegal cigarettes

Philip Morris has hired a former head of the Special Branch to work on its media campaign against illegal cigarettes in Ireland.

Kevin Donohoe, who until two years ago was the head of garda counterterrorism operations, now brings reporters on undercover missions where he and his team of ex-police officers buy counterfeit cigarettes in markets across the country. The campaign, coordinated by Heneghan PR in Dublin, is heavily funded by Philip Morris and aims to get Mr Donohoe’s undercover purchases reported in every county.

Articles have already appeared in local newspapers as well as in national tabloids. Each article covers the high level of illegal or counterfeit cigarettes available in the area but not all of them have explained that Philip Morris is behind the campaign.

See also:
No smoke without fire, Independent.ie
Special Report: Illegal cigarettes easily available in rural Cork areas, Irish Examiner
Undercover operation reveals widespread sale of illegal tobacco, Connacht Tribune

Source: The Times – 10 September 2016
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US: Tobacco Firms Pour Millions Into California Cigarette Tax Fight

Reynolds American Inc., Altria Group Inc. and other tobacco companies are steering millions of dollars to defeating a $2 cigarette-tax increase in California, a high-stakes effort and the third such fight in a decade in the most populous U.S. state.

The tobacco industry’s outlay of $35.6 million so far means that it has outspent supporters 2-to-1 in donations to defeat the measure, which starting in April would boost the levy to $2.87 a pack. The initiative would generate from $1 billion to $1.4 billion in revenue in fiscal 2018 for cancer treatment and smoking prevention.

Source: ESM – 09 September 2016
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US: Congressman who took $42,000 from tobacco industries, pushes to allow free tobacco for troops

Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) is fighting to allow tobacco companies to give free cigars to U.S. military personnel. Hunter has taken $42,011 from the tobacco industry since 2010, including over $13,511 for his 2016 campaign.

Asked about threats posed by tobacco to soldiers’ lives and health, as well as the high costs of caring for veterans suffering from tobacco-related illnesses, Hunter reportedly stated, “I don’t care. When it comes to guys overseas fighting, I don’t care,”.

Hunter, a combat veteran and former artillery officer, has said he believes tobacco helps calm nerves of soldiers and improve morale in high-stress situations. Hunter has said he smoked cigarettes while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, but has since switched to vaping (electronic cigarettes) and occasionally cigars.

Source: East County Magazine – 10 September 2016
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Sri Lanka: Finance ministry officials blocking 90% tax on tobacco

Sri Lanka’s Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne has claimed that certain officials in the Finance Ministry are sabotaging the government’s effort to control the use of tobacco and cigarettes by scuttling a cabinet proposal to increase tobacco tax to 90%.

He said that he had made a joint proposal to the Cabinet together with President Maithripala Sirisena to increase the tax on tobacco to 90%. The Finance Ministry responded by saying it wanted to study the proposal and submit observations. Senaratne added that whenever this matter was discussed the officials raised concerns, saying the tax increase will affect the industry and its 300,000 employees.

Source: Daily Mirror LK – 09 September 2016
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Bangladesh: Huge blaze at BAT packaging factory in kills at least 26

At least 26 people have been killed in a massive blaze at a factory that packages for British American Tobacco (BAT) and other companies.

The fire in Tongi, just 12 miles north of the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka, is the country’s worst industrial accident since the Rana Plaza building collapse in 2013 that killed 1,135 garment workers.

Tampaco Foils, which owns the five-storey factory, packages various items for several international brands, including BAT and Nestlé.

Source: Metro – 11 September 2016
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