Vanderbilt Law Review

First Page



In 1994, executives from "Big Tobacco"-industry leaders Philip Morris, R.J. Reynolds, Brown and Williamson Tobacco, and Lorillard-appeared before Congress and denied that nicotine is addictive despite internal documents disclosing a long history of industry-wide awareness about the addictive nature of the drug. One executive even denied that smoking causes death despite the well- established scientific consensus to the contrary. Worse still, tobacco companies had consciously targeted children as young as fourteen-years-old in their advertising schemes. In an internal R.J. Reynolds memorandum to Vice President of Marketing C.A. Tucker, J.F. Hind wrote: "To ensure increased and longer-term growth for CAMEL FILTER, the brand must increase its share penetration among the 14-24 age group which have a new set of more liberal values and which represent tomorrow's cigarette business." The popular cartoon character "Joe Camel" was born soon thereafter. Philip Morris shared the same marketing strategy; in an internal research report, a research executive for Philip Morris wrote that "[t]oday's teenager is tomorrow's potential regular customer."