R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. new Camel dissolvable test sites identified..

RAI's, President and CEO, Susan Ivey is almost gone..

February 24, 2011 - The debate over dissolvable tobacco products will be stoked further in March when R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. and Philip Morris USA launch new test markets.

Reynolds said Wednesday that it has chosen Charlotte and Denver as markets for its second phase of testing Camel Sticks, Camel Strips and Camel Orbs with adult tobacco consumers. David Howard, a Reynolds spokesman, said the closest its products would be available is Lake Norman and Mooresville. The products will be sold in three mint styles, as well as a variety pack of all three. "We hope to gain new and additional insight into our dissolvables from markets where there is proven demand for smokeless products and the Camel brand," Howard said.

Also Wednesday, Philip Morris said it will test Marlboro and Skoal smokeless tobacco sticks in unidentified markets in Kansas. It is its first attempt at dissolvable products. (Altria companies to test new smokeless tobacco stick..)

Jeff Middleswart, the portfolio manager for the Vice Fund of USA Mutuals, said that having the Camel and Marlboro brands involved in dissolvable products is likely to intensify the debate among advocacy groups. One set says that smokeless tobacco products serve as gateways for teenagers to cigarettes. The other set sees the products as a way to reduce the risk of tobacco use compared with cigarettes. "Anything tobacco will create criticism — it's just the way of the world," Middleswart said. "A new product that has the potential to gain market share is going to be a target."

In December, 2010, Reynolds exited test markets in Columbus, Ohio; Indianapolis; and Portland, Ore., after two years to evaluate the feedback it got from adult tobacco consumers.
R.J. Reynolds dissolvable tobacco products:

December 21, 2010 - R.J. Reynolds Tobacco confirms Camel Dissolvables being pulled from all 3-test markets.. David Howard, spokesperson for Reynolds American Inc. (RAI), Winston-Salem, N.C., told CSP Daily News, "We have made the business decision that we are going to be going to new lead markets for our dissolvable tobacco products late in the first quarter of 2011. As a result of that, we will be leaving the current three lead markets--Columbus, Ohio, Indianapolis and Portland, Ore."

February 4, 2011 - R.J. Reynolds is making product and packaging upgrades to Camel’s new line of innovative dissolvable tobacco products — Orbs, Sticks and Strips — which will be introduced in two new lead markets in March. (Reynolds American Inc. highlights business report q4 and entire 2010..)

At that time, Matthew Myers, the president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, called on Reynolds to permanently pull the products and to stop pushing tobacco products that he said enticed children and discouraged smokers from quitting. Myers has said that the dissolvable products appeal to children because they are easily concealed and colorfully packaged, shaped and flavored to resemble mints or gum.

Legislators in some states are trying to ban dissolvable products even though the products are not sold there.(Documentation: For Our Children - ban all dissolvable tobacco products - permanently..)

Howard said Reynolds has made adjustments to the packaging, marketing and product mix of its dissolvable products. Reynolds took a similar phased approach before its national launch of Camel Snus, another spit-free smokeless product. "The packaging is now larger and looks more like packaging of other types of traditional tobacco products, and is a different color," Howard said. "The packaging still carries language 'keep this product out of the reach of children.' "

John Spangler, a professor of family and community medicine at Wake Forest University School of Medicine, said that the new Reynolds packaging and labeling "may alleviate some concerns."
"But many tobacco-control advocates still remain concerned about the products' appearance — small tablet, stick and strip — that still look like candy," Spangler said. "This is particularly true of any flavored products." (Some facts for smokers to consider before considering smokeless tobacco.. - comments by Dr. Spangler)

Glaxo Smith Kline calls on U.S. govt to eliminate dissolvable tobacco products..

Reference: Dissolvable tobacco products to be tested by RICHARD CRAVER JOURNAL REPORTER, Winston-Salem Journal, 2/24/2011.



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