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  • 1930: CONSUMPTION: US has a per capita smoking rate of 977 cigarettes, twice the 1930

rate. (The Tax Burden on Tobacco, Historical Compilation Volume 35, 2000)

  • 1930: HEALTH: 2,357 cases of lung cancer reported in the US. (RK) The lung cancer death

rate in white males is 3.8 per 100,000.

  • 1930: SCIENCE: Researchers in Cologne, Germany, made a statistical correlation between

cancer and smoking.

  • 1930: TAXES: Federal tax revenues from tobacco products are over $500 million, 80% from


  • 1930: ADVERTISING: JAMA decries health claims made by cigarette ads

  • 1930: BUSINESS: The successors of the Tobacco Trust, led by RJ Reynolds, hike cigarette

prices (at the beginning of the Depression), leaving a perfect opening for Philip Morris, Brown & Williamson, and other small manufacturers to counter with low-priced brands..

  • Early 1930s: Bonnie & Clyde & RJR. "No doubt the most notorious devotee to Camels was

Bonnie Parker who, with Clyde Barow, toured what was evidently the Reynolds factory in the early 1930s."--The RJ Reynolds Tobacco Co., Tilley, 1985

  • 1930s: Cigar prices fall so low most hand-rolling cigar businesses fail.

  • 1930s: BRITAIN has highest rates of lung cancer in the world

  • 1930s: ADVERTISING: A Philip Morris ad states: "You're bound to inhale sometimes, but

you can have this proven protection."

  • 1930-1931: BUSINESS: Benson & Hedges introduces Parliament, which came in a hard box.

It featured a mouthpiece, and the first commercial filter tip: a wad of cotton, soaked in caustic soda. Both were meant mostly to keep bits of tobacco out of the smoker's mouth.

  • 1931-06: BUSINESS: Cigarette Price Wars begin. Cigarettes sold for 14 cents a pack, 2-for-

27 cents in the depths of the depression. Even with cheap leaf prices and manufacturing costs, and with "Luckies" advancing, RJReynolds President S. Clay Williams ups "Camel" prices a penny a pack. Others follow suit. The major TCs are seen as greedy opportunists. Dime-a-pack discount cigarettes eat into the majors' market share, taking as much as 20% of the market in 1932; PM releases "Paul Jones" discount brand. In 1933, TCs lower prices. Discounts maintain 11% of the market for the rest of the 30s (RK)

  • 1931: Safco is established by A.G. Busch, Safco is credited with engineering the cigarette

lighter plug for Ford's first automobiles.

  • 1932: BUSINESS: George G. Blaisdell imports a tough Austrian lighter, names it "Zippo,"

after the hot word for another recent invention, the "zipper." Founds "Zippo Manufacturing."

  • 1933: BUSINESS: Blaisdell begins manufacturing Zippos in Jan. or Feb., having improved on

the Austrian design.

  • 1933: LEGISLATION: Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1933 imposes acreage restrictions on

tobacco production and provides for government loans to tobacco farmers. The AAA institutes price supports, basically saving tobacco farmers from ruin.

  • 1933: BUSINESS: B&W introduces Kool, a menthol cigarette to compete with Axton-Fisher's

Spud, the only other mentholated brand. [B&W currently touts Kool as the first national menthol brand.]

  • 1933: BUSINESS: Leonard B. McKitterick becomes president of Philip Morris.

  • 1933: BUSINESS: Philip Morris resuscitates and revitalizes its Philip Morris as a tony, but

only premium-priced ("Now only 15 cents") "English Blend" brand.

  • 1933: BUSINESS: RJR begins to sell Camel in a one-piece 10-pack carton, the first time such

packaging is used.

  • 1933: BUSINESS: Hill & Knowlton is officially born when John Hill is joined by Don


  • 1933-11-25: ADVERTISING: The Journal of the American Medical Association, "after

careful consideration of the extent to which cigarettes were used by physicians in practice,"


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