‘Natural’ cigarette launch causes health controversy

Independent tobacconist AE Lloyd is planning to launch a brand of cigarettes that will be positioned as a “natural” alternative to additive-filled rivals, in a move that has provoked outrage among anti-tobacco campaigners.

The launch comes at a time when the industry has come under attack for lacing its cigarettes with flavourings such as chocolate, cherry and vanilla.

AE Lloyd says its cigarettes will be advertised as additive-free. The word “natural” is being considered as part of the brand name, which has yet to be decided.

A spokeswoman for anti-smoking group ASH says: “It is worrying that people could be lured into thinking this product is any healthier or more ethical. The product is inherently lethal, whatever you do or don’t put in it.”

AE Lloyd president Peter Lloyd says the company will tread carefully to avoid breaking laws against marketing tobacco.

“We have to be careful what we say and make sure it is 110 per cent correct,” he says. “But whether we use ‘additive-free’ or ‘natural’ tobacco there will be ways of communicating the selling point.”

Lloyd believes there is untapped demand for a mainstream, additive-free cigarette. He says the cigarette will be better for smokers and the company will try to “tap into the more health-conscious side of the brand”.

AE Lloyd’s cigarette portfolio includes the “Shag” brand, which was launched last year.

Latest from Marketing Week

NOT REGISTERED? IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here