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Growers advised to quit tobacco as demand falls

| December 16, 2014

Sluggish demand for tobacco grown by farmers in the Kampong Cham province of Cambodia has led to grower prices falling below the levels of those of 2013, according to a story in The Phnom Penh Post.

Chhay Vy, president of the Tobacco Farmers Association (TFA), said reduced demand from local companies and Vietnamese buyers for Cambodia-grown tobacco had resulted in farmer prices falling from $1.80 per kg last year to $1.25 per kg this year. “2014 was not a good year for tobacco farmers,” Vy said.

This year’s prices were down on those of both 2011 and 2013 to levels at which farmers were said to have been unable to make a profit.

Government officials have responded to Vy’s concerns by saying that tobacco farmers should change to other crops.

Chheang Chay, director of the Kampong Cham Provincial Department of Commerce, said tobacco farmers in Vietnam were facing similar issues because smoking was becoming less popular.

“Tobacco is a sensitive product due to health issues,” Chay said. “We cannot promote it like other agricultural product[s].

“Farmers should plant other crops instead of tobacco because the smoking trend is becoming less popular and it is doubtful that it will again become popular.”

Certified organic e-liquids being launched by VTM

| December 16, 2014

Vapor Tobacco Manufacturing (VTM) is due to launch what it describes as the first certified organic e-liquids for the vapor industry: eTron 3T .

VTM’s organic products are made from three ingredients: organic tobacco, organic glycerine and water.

The products have been certified organic under the US Department of Agriculture’s National Organic Program and will carry the USDA Organic Seal when they make their debut at the January Tobacco Plus Expo in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The organic e-liquids will be offered with American-Blend and Virginia-Blend flavors, both in Red (full) and Gold (light) strengths, and with organic menthol (Green) flavor. Other, organic, ‘responsible, adult-friendly flavors’ are to follow.

VTM says its organic liquids will be sold in child resistant 15 ml glass bottles as well as in pre-filled eTron 3T disposable e-cigarettes.

“We are proud to launch the first certified organic e-liquid for the vapor market,” said VTM founder and inventor Tom O’Connell. “Vapor consumers have not had an organic choice until now.

“Moreover, our organic product offers the most natural tobacco flavor in the vapor industry. It tastes like tobacco because it is made from tobacco – certified organic tobacco.

“Having been in the vapor industry for years and before that in cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, I know that flavors like caramel are substituted for real tobacco flavor in e-liquids. Vape shops often rotate smokers through a series of different flavors – simply because none of the available flavors actually fit the tobacco taste that the smoker is looking for.

“For adult smokers who are looking for tobacco satisfaction from vapor, our eTron 3T liquid is the answer. They’ll know the difference from the first puff.”

Meanwhile, Joseph Fuisz, co-founder, said that vapor innovation had focused on incremental device improvements while the actual e-liquid consumed had not materially changed except in respect of its provenance, which had seen a move from Chinese to US- and European-made liquids.

“Moreover, strong vapor category growth has masked the relatively low conversion rate for smokers who try vapour,” he said. “The vast majority of smokers do not stay with vapor and the principal reason is the poor acceptance of product taste. It is precisely this market – the adult smoker looking for vapor alternatives – that eTron® 3T(TM) organic e-liquids are geared to. Certified organic eTron® 3T(TM) e-liquid is a dramatic step forward for the vapor industry.”

Deadlines announced for Global Forum on Nicotine

| December 16, 2014

The organizer of the Global Forum on Nicotine (GFN) has issued a number of deadlines ahead of GFN2015, which is due to be held on June 5 and 6 at Warsaw, Poland.

According to the deadlines, abstracts for the science and policy update session and proposals for satellite sessions are due by February 28; while poster submissions and nominations for the Young Investigator award are due by March 31.

Meanwhile, the organizer, KAC (Knowledge-Action-Change), says that Professor Derek Yach will deliver the second Michael Russell Oration at GFN2015.

Currently leading the Vitality Group, Yach previously served as cabinet director at the World Health Organization under director-general Gro Harlem Brundtland, where he led the development of WHO’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and the Global Strategy on Diet and Physical Activity. He has held also a number of other high profile appointments in the field of public health, including professor of global health at Yale University.

Imperial annual report now available

| December 16, 2014

Imperial Tobacco has made available on its website its 2014 annual report.

The report, which includes information about the company’s corporate responsibility performance, can be viewed or downloaded from:

There is more on corporate responsibility at:

The company’s preliminary results for the year to the end of September were issued on November 4.

Tobacco is sticking point in Pacific trade agreement

| December 15, 2014

President Barack Obama said on Thursday that he believed the odds for striking a Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement were “significantly higher than 50-50″, though one “big bugaboo” concerned tobacco.

According to a story by Justin Sink for The Hill, Obama, speaking during a meeting with his export council, said he believed he and business leaders could “make a strong case” to Congress to approve the treaty.

The US is negotiating the TPP agreement with Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.

Obama acknowledged there were still some significant stumbling blocks in the regional free-trade agreement.

He said one “big bugaboo” was a concern that tobacco companies could use the deal to sue poorer countries in a bid to prevent anti-smoking legislation, or conversely, that anti-smoking laws could be unfairly applied to shake down US tobacco manufacturers.

But the president said he was optimistic negotiators could find a way that tobacco companies could abide by local safety rules by ensuring the laws “are not being discriminatorily applied.”

Sink’ story is at:

A lengthy report by Stephanie Cohen for Bloomberg BNA is at:

Nominations for Engle litigation awards closing today

| December 15, 2014

Courtroom View Network (CVN) is inviting nominations for the 2014 CVN Engle Litigation Awards.

The categories are: Plaintiff’s Attorney of the Year; Defense Attorney of the Year; Plaintiff’s Law Firm of the Year; and Defense Law Firm of the Year.

Nominations have to be in by today and the winners will be announced on December 30.

‘In 2014 alone, CVN has covered more than 25 Engle trials involving dozens of attorneys and billions of dollars in verdicts,’ CVN said in a note posted on its website on December 9.

‘To reflect on this pivotal year in the litigation’s history and to honor the lawyers at its forefront, we’re introducing the inaugural CVN Engle Litigation Awards.

So-called Engle progeny cases have been heard since a Florida Supreme Court decision in 2006 decertified a $145 billion class-action lawsuit filed by Howard Engle but allowed former class members to file individual lawsuits stating that cigarettes caused their respective illnesses.

More than 100 Engle progeny cases have been heard and about 8,000 cases are pending.

More information about the awards is at:

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