Tobacco ban covers promotional PR work

The Government’s proposed regulations banning advertising and sponsorship of tobacco products would severely curtail their manufacturers’ PR activities.

The Government’s proposed regulations banning advertising and

sponsorship of tobacco products would severely curtail their

manufacturers’ PR activities.



As PR Week went to press on Wednesday a Department of Health

spokesperson said that companies will not be able to host receptions,

fund community projects, put up web sites, organise photocalls or send

out press releases if these activities are designed to promote

cigarettes to consumers.



Lobbying of government, financial PR and communication with relevant

trades, such as newsagents, are unlikely to be affected.



A key section of the proposed legislation defines advertising as ’any

form of commercial communication with the aim or the direct or indirect

effect of promoting a tobacco product’.



The industry itself is unclear as to the extent to which the ban will

affect their ability to use PR. They will have a chance to put their

arguments and ask for more clarity during the two-month consultation

process on the draft tobacco regulations, which began last week.



Gallaher corporate affairs manager Jeff Jeffery said: ’All of our

methods of communicating to our consumers are being taken away and that

includes PR.’ Gallaher produces Silk Cut and Benson and Hedges.



At Imperial Tobacco, which makes Lambert and Butler and Embassy, general

manager, external affairs Paul Sadler said he believed the Government

was attempting to stop all promotional and marketing activity.



’If you mean by PR that it would have the aim of promoting a product,

then that is affected,’ he said.



Philip Morris, which sells the Marlboro brand in the UK, retains

Burson-Marsteller. Gallaher retains Karen Earl for PR for sponsored

events. Imperial retains Brunswick for financial PR and other agencies

on an ad-hoc basis, including James Reed PR.



Leader, p9.



Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Latest Articles

Max Clifford trial jury to reconvene tomorrow after majority verdicts direction

Max Clifford trial jury to reconvene tomorrow after majority verdicts direction

The jury in the trial of celebrity publicist Max Clifford on 11 charges of indecent assault has been sent home for the day after being told by the judge earlier this afternoon that he will now accept majority verdicts.

Labour "fooling themselves" over plans to combat attacks on Miliband

Labour "fooling themselves" over plans to combat attacks on Miliband

Conservative-leaning public affairs experts have questioned the value of Labour's adoption of US-style campaigning tactics in the wake of the opposition hiring election strategist David Axelrod.

PLMR appoints Professor Tim Morris as non-executive director

The vet who helped establish the British Horseracing Authority's anti-doping and animal welfare programme has joined PLMR as a non-executive director.