Intended for healthcare professionals


Do tobacco companies encourage young people to smoke?

BMJ 2001; 322 doi: (Published 27 January 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;322:237

Accusations against Philip Morris USA are untrue

  1. Ellen Merlo, senior vice president, corporate affairs
  1. Philip Morris USA, 120 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017-5592, USA
  2. 1300 East Walnut Street, Des Moines, IA 50317, USA
  3. Division of Adolescent Medicine, University of Rochester School of Medicine, Rochester, NY 14642, USA
  4. Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, USA

    EDITOR—Accusations made against Philip Morris USA in both an article and an editorial on candy cigarettes are misleading and untrue. 1 2 The company is categorically opposed to the use of its trademarks on candy cigarettes. Its position on this issue is consistent and clear. The accusations are false and are not supported by the facts.

    We do not permit the unauthorised use of our trademarks, including use on clothing or merchandise. We do not authorise others to use our trademarks in ways that we ourselves are prohibited from doing. We continue to take aggressive action, including the filing of lawsuits, to prevent the use of Philip Morris cigarette brand names or logos on any item marketed to minors, such as candy, video games, and toys.

    We have taken steps in over 1800 instances to prevent such unauthorised use of our trademarks. Records for the past three decades show that Philip Morris USA has been vigilant in its efforts to prevent trademark violations, especially on products that may appeal to children. Furthermore, in 1990 we began placing paid advertising in trade journals warning other …

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