May 5, 2020
IQOS retailers are being supported in stocking menthol cigarettes up to the 20 May menthol ban, with Philip Morris announcing a ‘Buy-Back’ scheme for its Marlboro Green, Marlboro Ice Blast and menthol Chesterfield products.
Stores which are signed up to the HEETWAVE retailer programme which also gives stores access to selling heat-not-burn HEET sticks and the IQOS menthol starter kit. Retailers can sign up through the company’s menthol-ban-retail.co.uk website.
Retailers who aren’t currently part of the programme can register their interest on the website from 20 May until 1 July with stores given until 1 September to send back unsold packs.
The company’s head of field force Kate O’Dowd said: “Philip Morris’ Buy-Back system will support retailers following the implementation of the menthol cigarette ban, while our IQOS Menthol Kits will open up new profit streams and help businesses retain those menthol customers who do not or cannot quit nicotine and tobacco use completely.”
Other companies have also committed to buying back menthol stock after the ban comes into force later this month. The hope from suppliers is that this will allow retailers to benefit from menthol sales right up to the day before the ban and not delist top-sellers early to ensure businesses aren’t stuck with substantial amounts of unsold stock.
Mark Yexley, communications director at JTI says: “Following the implementation of the ban, JTI representatives will exchange menthol and capsule stock held by every retailer who our sales reps visit as part of our standard 12-week call cycle.
“Should your local JTI representative not be able to visit your store immediately following the menthol ban on the 20 May, please ensure that you keep the JTI menthol and capsule stock that need swapping separate from other stock.”
Retailers that plan on swapping or selling back stock to suppliers are advised to ensure they can also supply track and trace codes.