ecig

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

ecig

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

FINITI-1

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

CamelSNUSMint

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

cigarettes

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

ecigarette

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

cigarettes

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

accessories

Lighting Your Way to Profitability

When sold responsibly, lighters are a dependable source of revenue, even as the number of smokers declines. Lighters are a much-needed tool for the home grill and candles. Another trend helping push lighter sales in c-stores is flavored cigars, which continues to grow at an impressive rate. “Tobacco accessories are alive and well, evolving with

couchetard

blu Cigs Arrive in Canada’s Couche-Tard Stores

“We are interested in products that are on the cutting edge,” says Jean-Marie Bourque, Couche-Tard category manager.  On the heels of an impressive 2011 retail expansion, blu Cigs has started 2012 by boosting the number of U.S. retail locations carrying blu to nearly 20,000. Now, the e-cigarette company is celebrating another milestone—expansion into the Canadian

tobaccoLARGE

NATO Announces Initiative To Combat Local Ordinances

Free sign up date for the April 2012 NATO Show extended. The National Association of Tobacco Outlets (NATO) launched a new initiative in response to the wave of local ordinances being proposed in cities in Massachusetts, California, Rhode Island, Illinois, Pennsylvania and other states.  “These local ordinance are the latest in the attempt by the anti-tobacco

GetEngaged

R.J. Reynolds Launches Get Engaged

R.J. Reynolds delivers on its pledge to its retail partners with a powerful new online tool: Get Engaged. R.J. Reynolds has launched Get Engaged, a new feature on EngageRJRT.com, the online resource for R.J. Reynolds’ retail partners. Get Engaged was created as a research and learning platform intended to provide retailers with shopper insights and

Cigars02

Designing a Winning OTP Strategy

Convenience stores have evolved from being a destination for cigarettes to a destination for tobacco products as a whole. By Joe Bush, Contributing Editor. It was inevitable that the conversation on convenience store cigar sales would shift eventually from rapid growth to supplier relations, category management and marketing. As cigarette regulations and prices and taxes

cigarette multi

A Simple Tobacco Fable

Alternative products are helping to shape the future of convenience store tobacco sets. By Lou Maiellano. Imagine, if you will, that European explorers land in Africa, North America or South America in the 14th, 15th or 16th centuries. Upon landing, these explorers find the inhabitants of these exotic new lands drinking a strange, energizing brew

cigarsLEAD

Altria Chairman and CEO To Retire

“Now is the time to transition leadership to people of an age to guide the company through its next phase of growth,” says Altria CEO. Altria has announced that Chairman and CEO Michael Szymanczyk, 63, has decided to retire after 23 years of distinguished service to the company, including four years as chairman and CEO

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FDA’s CTP Announces Public Workshop

A Webcast of the workshop will be available, although preregistration is required. FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products has announced a Research Program Public Workshop: Expanding the Research Base for Tobacco Product Regulation. The purpose of the public workshop is to discuss FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products’ (CTP) research priorities across a broad array of disciplines;

CircleK2

Circle K Offers FIN Electronic Cigarettes

“Our product line is a natural fit in Circle K and will cater to the increased demand for high quality, reliable electronic cigarettes from the Circle K customer base,” says Finiti Branding Group president. Circle K Stores Inc. is now offering the new FIN Electronic Cigarette in each of the convenience store chain’s eight regions. 

RYO

Building New Tobacco Sales

Retailers and government officials butt heads over handmade cigarettes. By Pat Pape, Contributing Editor Celeste Lucas likes to smoke, but she doesn’t like paying $5 a pack for cigarettes, so she took matters into her own hands and purchased a roll-your-own cigarette machine. Using loose tobacco and paper tubes, she can now create an entire

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Altria’s Tobacco Companies Launch Citizens for Tobacco Rights

Website brings together adult tobacco consumers on tobacco public policy issues. Altria’s tobacco operating companies launched Citizens for Tobacco Rights, a Website for adult tobacco consumers who are interested in information and advocacy on tobacco-related public policy issues. Citizens for Tobacco Rights is a group of adult smokers and dippers joining together to get active

CamelSNUSLetItSnus

Camel SNUS Launches Print Campaign

Smokers have more options today when it comes to tobacco use, and Camel wants customers to know it’s transforming with the times. Camel SNUS is running a number of print ads that are appearing in dozens of alt-weeklies nationwide this month. “At a time when adult tobacco consumers may be considering their options, we want

smokeless

Smokeless Sales Show No Signs of Dipping

Enhancing variety will continue to be a key for this high growth category. By Howard Riell, Associate Editor. Sales of smokeless tobacco products keep increasing and convenience store operators are enjoying the ride. But keeping that graph line headed north means keeping a wary eye on proposed federal regulations, keeping sets fresh, properly allocating shelf

cigarettes

FDA’s Requirement For Graphic Images on Cigarette Packs Blocked

A Federal Judge strikes down FDA’s graphic image requirement on packs of cigarettes until the lawsuit is resolved. A judge has blocked a federal mandate that would require tobacco companies to add graphic images to cigarette packages in 2012, the Associated Press reported. On Monday, Nov. 7, U.S. District Judge Richard Leon ruled cigarette manufacturers

CIGARS

Driving OTP Sales

While cigar sales do not approach those of cigarettes, they offer convenience stores better margins. Plus, new flavors and competitive pricing are keeping customers interested in the category. By Joe Bush, Contributing Editor. Other tobacco products (OTP) in general and cigars in particular continue to earn more shelf space in convenience stores, and the higher

HBC-General-Merchandise

Adding a Spark to Tobacco Sales

Customized and novelty lighters offer customers an opportunity to express themselves. By Howard Riell, Associate Editor. In simpler times, lighters were used chiefly as a means to an end—lighting up a cigarette, birthday candles or even restarting an oven. Today, however, with the growth of the tobacco accessories category, lighters have become an end in

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