ASH Daily News for 29 April 2019


  • UK Authorities Investigating British American Tobacco over Advertising of E-Cigarettes on Social Media
  • British American Tobacco sees 2019 profit growth in face of tighter regulations
  • Ex-smoker backs Yorkshire Smokefree campaign


  • ASH #ActOnTobacco Campaign



UK Authorities Investigating British American Tobacco over Advertising of E-Cigarettes on Social Media

Following complaints by leading health organizations, the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority is investigating British American Tobacco’s (BAT) use of social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to promote its Vype e-cigarettes. Complaints have been filed by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (CTFK), Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) and Stopping Tobacco Organizations & Products (STOP).

According to evidence documented by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, BAT’s posts on social media have been designed to maximize exposure of e-cigarettes to children, teenagers and non-nicotine users, in contravention of UK advertising regulations.

UK regulations prohibit online advertising of e-cigarettes, but allow a manufacturer to provide factual product information such as the name, content and price of the product on its own websites. The ASA advises that e-cigarette manufacturers’ social media accounts may also provide factual content as long as the content can only be found by “those actively seeking it.”

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of ASH, commented: “We challenged BAT about its irresponsible marketing of Vype at the company’s 2019 Annual General Meeting last week, but did not get a satisfactory reply. BAT claims to engage in responsible marketing aimed at adult consumers only. But the evidence submitted to the ASA shows that much of their promotion of Vype gives maximum exposure to children and teenagers. Same old tobacco industry, same old tactics.”

Source: PR Newswire, 29 April 2019

See also
ASH Blog: BAT under investigation by the ASA for promoting e-cigs to young people on social media

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British American Tobacco sees 2019 profit growth in face of tighter regulations

British American Tobacco Plc expects another year of good earnings growth in 2019, despite concerns about tighter regulations in the US, Chairman Richard Burrows said at the company’s annual general meeting last Thursday. The maker of Lucky Strike and Dunhill cigarettes reported higher full-year adjusted sales and profit, boosted by cigarette market share gains and higher sales of vaping devices.

Concerns about proposed regulation in the US, which could include a ban on menthol cigarettes BAT sells under the Newport brand, have contributed to their share price losing around half its value since May 2017.

Source: Reuters, 25 April 2019

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Ex-smoker backs Yorkshire Smokefree campaign

Tony Holroyd, an ex-smoker living in Wakefield, has backed a county-wide campaign ‘Yorkshire Smokefree’ to help raise awareness of the support available to smokers who want to quit.

Tony began smoking at the age of 10, after copying his older brother, and was smoking as many as 20 cigarettes a day when he first attended Smokefree last June. He was given a mixture of prescription tablets and professional support to help him quit.

George Butterworth, Cancer Research UK’s senior prevention policy manager said: “Tobacco is the single biggest preventable cause of cancer. With this campaign we want to highlight the effectiveness of using support tools to quit smoking, so that smokers, like Tony, can find the tools that are right for them.”

Source: Wakefield Express, 26 April 2019

See also
Yorkshire Smokefree Wakefield

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ASH #ActOnTobacco Campaign

Today is the fourth day of a week long campaign by ASH and our partners, highlighting how Big Tobacco’s big profits continue to be built on a lethal trade and shady dealings.

Today’s blog looks at BAT’s promotion of its Vype e-cigarette through Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. The Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids (CTFK) and ASH have sent evidence to the ASA showing how BAT’s promotions breach the Committee of Advertising Practice Code, and the Advertising Guidance on Electronic Cigarettes.

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