Q&A: Legalities of tobacco advertisements

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From the Rensselaer Republican:

Q: Could you tell me if there are any limitations or legalities to running an ad in our daily newspaper regarding tobacco products? We have a potential to print an ad with pricing for cigarettes. Are there any issues or standards we should be aware of?

A: Cigarettes are a legal product so you’re not prohibited from running the advertising, including pricing.

What you do have to be aware of is who pays for the advertising.

If the manufacturer or a wholesaler pays it for, the ad must include the U.S. surgeon general’s tobacco warning.

If the ad is being put together by a local convenience store, and the advertiser is not getting money from a manufacturer or wholesaler to place the advertising, then the warning label is not required.

Contact Steve Key, HSPA executive director and general counsel, with media law questions at skey@hspa.com or (317) 624-4427.

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