SALE OF SINGLE STICKS OF CIGARETTES IN AFRICA
Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) working to stop the spread of the tobacco epidemic on the African continent have long expressed concern about the sale of single sticks of cigarettes “single sticks”. They worry that selling cigarettes in single sticks initiates the young and the poor into smoking and consequently worsens the tobacco epidemic which is already dire in Africa. To get a better understanding of the phenomenon of selling single sticks of cigarettes in the continent, the African Tobacco Control Alliance (ATCA), with support from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, partnered with CSOs to conduct a survey in 10 countries.
The CSOs sought to learn whether concern about single stick sales existed within government, how single stick cigarette sales and marketing mechanisms may be similar and different across the countries, and whether it was possible to detect common tobacco industry practices to support single stick sales.
This report which identifies British American Tobacco (BAT), Philip Morris International (PMI) and Imperial Brands as the main perpetrators of the sale of single sticks of cigarettes in Africa, highlights evidence of the existence of the phenomenon, and confirms that it is indeed problematic on the continent. It begins with an explanation of the project approach and methodology, and then presents findings. It concludes with a discussion on tobacco multinationals’ strategies in selling single sticks and recommendations on how to address the issue.