Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Future of Tobacco

First of all, first post (woot!). Had this idea, thought of emailing a few people in the science industry, decided probably not worth their time at the minute.

Been doing a little bit of reading this morning, and have discovered in my opinion the future of tobacco in Australia, (Despite my very relevant lack of general business knowledge and training) and quite possibly the world.

Firstly read [link]

In summary, by changing the fertilizer used to grow tobacco to an organic variety as opposed to a phosphate one, lung cancer incidences as a result of smoking would drop.

Secondly read [link]

Although being four years old, this issue of illegal tobacco will only rise as taxes on tobacco rise. And taxes on tobacco are still rising.

My Conclusions:

If the use of organic fertilizer was able to reduce the incidence of lung cancer.
Then surely the government (and health concerned tobacco companies, very likely) would envisage use of organic fertilizer as a worthwhile investment.

This is now dreaming a little bit (but makes the whole business worth while) this reduction in lung cancer would mean tobacco taxes can be reduced, thus illegal tobacco industry would lose it's profit margin...

  1. Those that are responsible for the taxes on tobacco (anti-smoking zealots) would still bitch and moan about the other harms of smoking.
  2. The Australian government receives around about 5 billion dollars in tax from tobacco sales. They will not want to give that up.
  3. The benefits of organic fertilizer do not outweigh the price of the fertilizer required.
Solutions/For the future:

  • More research needs to be conducted into the health benefits of changing fertilizers
  • Genetically modified tobacco?
  • There is already (At least) one american company using organic fertilizers (American Spirit Tobacco), If the research in the first link was brought to the publics attention I can imagine how this company's profits would begin to skyrocket. (Hey! I can smoke with an x% less chance of lung cancer, seems like a healthier alternative)
  • Surely it would be a good business strategy of major tobacco companies if smokers jumped on the up and coming organic produce train to offer organic cigarettes?
Potential Benefits:

  1. Cheaper Cigarettes
  2. Healthier Cigarettes (OK, so it is still smoking and that is still detrimental to health, I will admit that such sticks would still be instruments of death and no reason for a non-smoker to start smoking)
  3. Legalization of Marijuana, which in my opinion would definitely be a plus to society, and have included this due to the cannabis culture article from which this blog was inspired by.
  4. Drop in crimes related to chop chop tobacco
End notes:

If this idea interests you, but in your area (ie. Australia) it is unavailable, and likely to remain unavailable for many years then grow your own! (If you get caught, I believe it is illegal in some places argue the case for organic tobacco in court, and you shall help develop this cause)

Any feedback is much appreciated, and I'm more than open for discussion.