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JTI U.S.A. Names New Director of Portfolio, Brand & Trade Strategy

“I know Christopher will continue to challenge the status quo with clear strategies for growth and improvement of JTI U.S.A. brands,” says JTI U.S.A. general manager. JT International U.S.A. (JTI U.S.A.) has appointed Christopher Mitchell as director of the portfolio, brand & trade strategy pillar in the consumer & trade marketing department. In this role,

cigs

Shifting Smokers Spur Category Evolution

As more cigarette buyers switch to smokeless and electronic tobacco products, convenience store retailers juggle SKUs to drive profit.    By Howard Riell, Associate Editor. Traditional cigarettes—once the mighty margin maker for retailers—continue to face a rocky road as the tobacco market shifts toward increasing consumer interest in moist smokeless, flavored cigars and electronic cigarettes.

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E-Cigarettes Coming of Age

Exponential growth in usage and innovative packaging lead some experts to believe e-tobacco may be the wave of the future. By Bob Phillips, Contributing Editor. In fiction there was Roy Hobbs, the athletic prodigy who came, unheard of, out of the Iowa cornfields to take the world by storm. In real life there is Mike

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FDA Strikes Again In Graphic Warning Label Battle

The agency has requested a hearing before all eight judges on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is fighting back after a three judge panel with the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, on Aug. 24, barred the FDA’s

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Pipe Tobacco With Legs

Scandinavian Tobacco Group Lane has introduced PIPA, a product that will make it easier than ever for cigarette and cigar smokers to explore the world of pipe tobacco.  Each package comes with 1.5 ounces of Vanilla Cavendish pipe tobacco, a free corn cob pipe, a free sticker, and a free ‘Pipe Smoking 101’ instruction booklet—all

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Seizing Control of Smokeless Tobacco

With new flavors, brand extensions and increased promotional activity, MST sales continue to post strong gains at convenience stores. By Howard Riell, Associate Editor. The smokeless tobacco category remains strong, and not just because legislators have chased consumers away from cigarettes. New products and flavors combined with competitive pricing, increased promotional activity and effective merchandising

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Maintaining Strong Cigar Sales

Despite a demand from adult consumers, retailers are continually forced to defend their right to sell flavored cigars responsibly. By Howard Riell, Associate Editor While tobacco has long been a bread-and-butter product for convenience stores, accounting for millions in individual unit sales and boosting the profits from the average smoker’s market basket, it remains a

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Customers ‘Krave’ Electronic Tobacco

E-cigarettes offer consumers an alternative to traditional cigarettes. They are also virtually odorless, allowing them to be consumed in locations where traditional smoking is commonly prohibited. By CSD Staff Vapor Corp., one of the only publicly traded companies (OTCBB: VPCO) servicing the electronic cigarette and vaporizer industry, maintains its integrity in a fiercely competitive market

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Seizing Smokeless Opportunities

Convenience store operators are enjoying the growing popularity of smokeless tobacco products, but they are also being forced to keep a wary eye on federal and local regulations. By Howard Riell, Associate Editor Is the smokeless tobacco product category, which includes moist snuff, snus and dissolvables, the lifeboat that convenience store retailers hope it will

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FDA Scrutiny Clouds Cigar Outlook

While flavored and pre-priced cigar sales are booming, FDA’s pending regulation of the category could upset trends and profits. by Erin Rigik, Associate Editor. Tedeschi Food Shops does a strong cigar business, and with 3-4 feet of space reserved for cigars on the back bar, consumers take notice. Sales on cigars were up for the

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Leveling The RYO Playing Field

In recent years, roll-your-own tobacco machines have surfaced at various retail locations putting convenience stores at a competitive disadvantage on price. By Howard Riell, Associate Editor America, and in particular its lawmakers, remains caught in a love-hate relationship with tobacco. That push-pull has resulted in very well-publicized attempts to dissuade Americans from using tobacco, or

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E-Tobacco Shows No Signs of Slowing

Although the electronic cigarette category in the U.S. is barely five years old, a dizzying number of brands are vying for the attention of retailers—and more are entering the fray just about every day. By Marilyn Odesser-Torpey, Associate Editor In a report released in May, UBS Investment Research likened the chaotic e-cigarette category to the e-commerce

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Understanding Today’s Tobacco Customers

MSA and Paradigm Sample, in partnership with Convenience Store Decisions, examine the purchasing habits of adult tobacco consumers at U.S. convenience stores. By Trish Temmerman, Management Science Associates, and John Lofstock, Editor. The tobacco industry continues to face challenges on multiple fronts, namely ongoing legislative initiatives and the ever-present high rate of taxation. These persistent

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Decoding Haverstraw’s Questionable Tobacco Display Ban

With various federal laws banning or limiting certain cigarette product advertising, cigarette packaging itself has become a commercially accepted form of advertising. By John Lofstock, Editor. In early April, the Village of Haverstraw, N.Y., adopted a first-of-its-kind ordinance in the U.S. that requires retailers to keep tobacco out of public view. To learn more about

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Dispelling the Myths of Tobacco Control

A response to the recent misleading “Deadly Alliance” report implicating convenience stores. By Seth A. Mailhot, Special Counsel, Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP. This is the first of what will be a continuing series on the regulation of tobacco retailing. In future articles, I will address the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) regulation

cigarettes

GAO Suggests Equalizing Tobacco Tax Rates

A new report finds shift in using pipe versus roll-your-own tobacco and large cigars versus small cigars to avoid hefty taxes. This week, the federal Government Accounting Office (GAO) issued a report titled “Large Disparities in Rates for Smoking Products Trigger Significant Market Shifts to Avoid Higher Taxes.” The document shows the impact of the

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Redrawing the Battle Lines

Separating nicotine from cigarettes and smoking could open new doors for tobacco. By Lou Maiellano. Imagine a natural ingredient so promising and intriguing that it is being clinically evaluated to address a variety of illnesses and conditions, including depression, schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s, Tourette syndrome, ADHD, anger management and anxiety. Think about it, an ingredient that would

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Lawmakers Targeting Electronic Cigarettes

As their popularity soars in convenience stores, e-cigs are becoming the target of new smoking bans and tax regulations. By Erin Rigik, Associate Editor. Once speculated to be a passing fad, e-cigarettes are increasing in sales and popularity and pushing their way toward becoming a mainstream product. Celebrities from Leonardo DiCaprio to Britney Spears have

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FIN Electronic Cigarettes Launches Nationwide Ad Campaign

“With these ads, we definitely want to evoke memories of a time when smokers were not literally kicked to the curb,” says chief branding officer for Finiti Branding Group. FIN Electronic Cigarettes has launched a brand awareness campaign with full page ads in Rolling Stone magazine. The campaign features a series of full-page print advertisements

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R.J. Reynolds Introduces Camel SNUS Mint

R.J. Reynolds has announced the expansion of its Camel SNUS line, now available in select retail outlets in a Mint style. Camel SNUS Mint is the latest innovation from the brand known for transforming tobacco, giving adult tobacco consumers the freedom to “Break Free” and enjoy tobacco pleasure on their own terms. Offering innovative smoke-free

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High Expectations for Cigarettes

While there are those who would like to see cigarettes go up in smoke, c-store operators can rest assured that this critical category will continue to be ablaze with activity. “Among the trends I see for 2012 is that there is going to be continued or heightened competition among the second tier brands,” said Bonnie

E-Cig Users Celebrate World Vaping Day

As e-cig sales globally hit  $200 million, with over $100 million of business in the U.S., e-cig consumer organizations encourage vapers to celebrate the product around the world. Thousands of smokers and ex-smokers across the world will be celebrating World Vaping Day March 22 to celebrate the success of the electronic cigarette, and to encourage

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E-Cigarettes Are Here to Stay

Until recently, e-cigs have been sold through traditional tobacco stores that normally expect a keystone or 100% markup on items other than cigarettes. Though it is hard to determine the number of e-cig users in the U.S., the National Vapers Club estimated that about a million people used e-cigs last year, so it certainly is

OTP

Navigating OTP’s Legal Battleground

The prospects for OTP throughout 2012 are good, as growth remains strong. But a swelling number of revenue-strapped state legislatures continue to hungrily eye the category. “I think the category will continue to expand,” predicted Matt Hieb, category manager for Gate Petroleum, which operates 225 convenience stores in six Southeastern states.“The growth of the brands

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New Report Attacks Tobacco Sales, Targets C-Stores

Report by anti-smoking groups condemns c-stores for point-of-sale tobacco marketing. A new report, titled “Deadly Alliance: How Tobacco Companies and Convenience Stores Partner to Market Tobacco Products and Fight Life-Saving Policies” has been released by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, Counter Tobacco (a project that works to counter tobacco product sales and marketing at the

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