Magazine article Marketing

Minister out to 'Kill' Tobacco

Magazine article Marketing

Minister out to 'Kill' Tobacco

Article excerpt

MINISTER OUT TO `KILL' TOBACCO

The Government is to deliver a bodyblow to the UK tobacco industry with a shock on-pack warning that "smoking kills".

New health secretary William Waldegrave - a non-smoker - has deliberately chosen new compulsory warnings which he thinks will be most effective in alerting consumers to what he calls the "terrible health risk" of smoking.

His move marks another victory for health campaigners after initial Government reluctance to insist that the warnings should include such a frightener.

Tobacco firms reckoned they had persuaded ministers that "smoking kills" is too strong, though they have tolerated the less direct "smoking can cause fatal diseases" (Marketing, December 13 1990).

Marketers are still absorbing the likely sales impact of such a blunt deterrent. Cigarette volume sales have been in steady decline over the past decade as health fears, most recently over the effect of passive smoking, take hold.

Waldegrave issued draft regulations on Tuesday for three months' consultation. They will implement the EC tobacco labelling directive which becomes UK law at the end of 1991. …

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