New “High Nicotine” Cigarette Hits Minnesota Market

A new and unusual brand of cigarettes is being marketed in Minnesota. RED SUN cigarettes are promoted as “The BOLDEST, most UNAPOLOGETIC, and HIGHEST NICOTINE cigarettes in America!” in local publications like City Pages. RED SUN cigarettes are manufactured by a company called 22nd Century which has a mission to: “reduce the harm caused by… Continue reading New “High Nicotine” Cigarette Hits Minnesota Market

Swisher Sweets promotes heavily on social media

Swisher Sweets cigar brand focuses heavily on promotion through social media marketing. Swisher uses Instagram (@swishersweets), Twitter (@swishersweets), YouTube, and Facebook to promote their products. They do this by using popular or trending hashtags (e.g. #onfleek) that link their posts to general feeds that aren’t age restricted.

Saint Paul votes to restrict sale of flavored tobacco, raise price of cigars

he City Council voted unanimously to restrict the sale of flavored tobacco products to adult-only tobacco stores and increase the minimum price for single cigars to $2.60 each. All cigars sold in packages of four or less must be priced at $2.60 each, while cigars packaged at four or more must be at least $10.40.

CDC: Adult smoking rate at a historic low

The Centers for Disease Control announced today that the adult smoking rate has dropped, continuing a six-year downward trend. According to the National Health Interview Survey, the current adult smoking rate is now 15.2 percent, down from 16.8 percent in 2014. The national smoking rate peaked in 1965, when about 42 percent of adults were… Continue reading CDC: Adult smoking rate at a historic low

Direct Mailing Project Update: July 2015

The Association for Nonsmokers-Minnesota (ANSR) conducts research on tobacco industry web and mail marketing with funding from ClearWay MinnesotaSM.  The project began in 2010.  Today, the ANSR archive contains thousands of examples of marketing.  The tobacco industry uses these types of marketing to build relationships with consumers. Tobacco companies frequently send free giveaways to consumers… Continue reading Direct Mailing Project Update: July 2015

RJ Reynolds and Lorillard Merge

By CHRIS FARMER-LIES  Reynolds American (RJR) and Lorillard have merged after nearly a year of negotiation, combining the second and third largest tobacco companies in a $27 billion deal. British American Tobacco will remain the largest single shareholder in the newly-merged company, which might threaten Altria’s (formerly Philip Morris) decades-long dominance over the industry. While… Continue reading RJ Reynolds and Lorillard Merge

Minneapolis Adopts Restrictions on Flavored Tobacco Products

By BETSY BROCK The Minneapolis City Council voted unanimously on July 10 to restrict the sale of flavored tobacco products other than menthol to adult-only tobacco shops. The Council also increased the price of cigars to $2.60 apiece. Several other cities in Minnesota, including Maplewood, Bloomington, Saint Paul, and Brooklyn Center, have adopted policies that… Continue reading Minneapolis Adopts Restrictions on Flavored Tobacco Products

Will the tobacco industry turn to cannabis?

By CHRIS FARMER-LIES Starting today, registered Minnesota residents with any of nine qualifying conditions will be able to access medical cannabis in pill, oil, or liquid form. Of the 23 states which have loosened restrictions on medical cannabis, Minnesota’s program is considered extremely narrow. As cannabis regulation evolves, the tobacco industry’s relationship with the drug… Continue reading Will the tobacco industry turn to cannabis?

R.J. Reynolds Markets New “Smokeless” Cigarettes

By CHRIS FARMER-LIES R. J. Reynolds, the second-largest tobacco company in the United States, began test-marketing a new type of smokeless cigarette in Wisconsin. Revo is a rebranding of Eclipse, which was originally test-marketed from 1994 to 2005. The first phase of the product was Premier, which  was originally released in 1989. All products use… Continue reading R.J. Reynolds Markets New “Smokeless” Cigarettes

New Smokeless Tobacco Products Use Bulk Packaging to Avoid Taxes

By BETSY BROCK Moist smokeless tobacco brands such as Longhorn and Kayak have a new packaging scheme to avoid Minnesota’s minimum moist smokeless tobacco (MST) tax. As of Jan. 1, 2014, a minimum tax is applied to MST products. These products are taxed at 95 percent of wholesale price with a minimum tax of $2.90… Continue reading New Smokeless Tobacco Products Use Bulk Packaging to Avoid Taxes