Tobacco industry

includes companies that produce cigarettes, cigars, smoking tobacco, snuff, chewing tobacco, snuff or bidis

The tobacco industry comprises the companies engaged in manufacturing, distribution, import and sale of tobacco products and tobacco-related products.

Quotes about the tobacco industry edit

  • Infectious diseases do not employ multinational public relations firms. There are no front groups to promote the spread of cholera. Mosquitoes have no lobbyists. The evidence presented here suggests that tobacco is a case unto itself, and that reversing its burden on global health will be not only about understanding addiction and curing disease, but, just as importantly, about overcoming a determined and powerful industry.

  • It is about an industry, and in particular these Defendants, that survives, and profits, from selling a highly addictive product which causes diseases that lead to a staggering number of deaths per year, an immeasurable amount of human suffering and economic loss, and a profound burden on our national health care system. Defendants have known many of these facts for at least 50 years or more. Despite that knowledge, they have consistently, repeatedly, and with enormous skill and sophistication, denied these facts to the public, to the Government, and to the public health community. Moreover, in order to sustain the economic viability of their companies, Defendants have denied that they marketed and advertised their products to children under the age of eighteen and to young people between the ages of eighteen and twenty-one in order to ensure an adequate supply of “replacement smokers,” as older ones fall by the wayside through death, illness, or cessation of smoking. In short, Defendants have marketed and sold their lethal product with zeal, with deception, with a single-minded focus on their financial success, and without regard for the human tragedy or social costs that success exacted.

  • Efforts to prevent noncommunicable diseases go against the business interests of powerful economic operators. In my view, this is one of the biggest challenges facing health promotion. [...] it is not just Big Tobacco anymore. Public health must also contend with Big Food, Big Soda, and Big Alcohol. All of these industries fear regulation, and protect themselves by using the same tactics. Research has documented these tactics well. They include front groups, lobbies, promises of self-regulation, lawsuits, and industry-funded research that confuses the evidence and keeps the public in doubt. Tactics also include gifts, grants, and contributions to worthy causes that cast these industries as respectable corporate citizens in the eyes of politicians and the public. They include arguments that place the responsibility for harm to health on individuals, and portray government actions as interference in personal liberties and free choice. This is formidable opposition. [...] When industry is involved in policy-making, rest assured that the most effective control measures will be downplayed or left out entirely. This, too, is well documented, and dangerous. In the view of WHO, the formulation of health policies must be protected from distortion by commercial or vested interests.

  • Thanks partly to the First Amendment, U.S. tobacco makers also aren’t constricted by some of the more stringent branding and health-warning rules introduced elsewhere. In Britain and Australia, cigarettes are sold in drab, greenish-brown packs with a large health warning and a graphic photo illustrating smoking’s risks, from diseased lungs to blindness.

  • Legal setbacks in the US have forced the tobacco industry to concede that its products are harmful, and that for decades cigarette producers deliberately misled the public about the health effects of smoking. [...] They should be regarded as a warning: The industry couldn’t be trusted in the past, and it shouldn’t be trusted to do the right thing in the future. [...] Governments and health organizations like ours are at war with the tobacco industry, and we will continue fighting until we beat Big Tobacco.

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