You’ve got to hand it to those Tobacco companies, if they can find a way around trying to make their product less mortally despicable and more sexy, they will find it.
Ireland has been at the forefront of efforts to curb smoking – Legislation was introduced by current Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin that prohibited smoking in bars, restaurants and the workplace, followed by an end to the sale of ten packs and a ban on retail displays and adverts.
Picture health warnings on packets was introduced this year by Fine Gael Minister for Health Dr James Reilly, with further legislation to be introduced that will force tobacco manufacturers to use plain boxes emblazoned with graphic images under tough new laws. The current government has been subjected to a huge lobbying effort on behalf of Tobacco manufacturers, and all political muscle money can buy to lobby the government that comes with such efforts.
If you smoke you can’t have missed the graphic images that emblazon all tobacco products. But it seems Benson and Hedges have devised some cunning packaging to circumnavigate the legislation, that’s legal speak for dropping your pants and mooning at the law.
This caught my eye today, Normal tobacco packaging has the health warning on one side and graphic picture on the other, for smokers there no escaping this reminder every time you go to have a cigarette, till now.
So what we have is a normal run of the mill packet of Benson and Hedges. Cant miss the fella dying the slow painful death from throat cancer, can you……..
You open pack as normal….. oh, whats this……. The outer packaging slides away and reveals an inner carton….. Yes indeed, the outer packaging can be discarded so the consumer of death does not have to be reminded of his or hers own impending doom.
Here you have the nice, shiny, sleek new packaging, no mention of a slow, painful, cancerous death or impotence, heart disease, stroke and the rest of the other excruciatingly painful ways you will die from smoking.
“Style you can taste”. It’s not a Porsche yer smoking. They should have just said, “gwan ya know ya know want one”.
Either way I suspect Minister Reilly may want to close this loop-hole. Unless it was lobbied for of course.