smoking cowboy single

Tobacco companies must, at times, feel like King Canute, desperately trying to hold back the relentless tide of taxation, marketing regulation and opprobrium levelled against them.

This year the tide will reach a new high, with the next phase of the display ban kicking in from April and the Tories promising MPs a vote on the introduction of plain packaging before the May election - no doubt prompted by Labour’s pledge to follow Australia in banning all branding from packs if it gains power. 

Today, the age of cigarette endorsements from doctors and the glitterati (Hollywood legend Barbara Stanwyck once proclaimed L&M Filters to be ‘just what the doctor ordered’) couldn’t seem more distant, given the graphic images of the effects of smoking now carried by law on Australian packs.