Select Committee on Health Written Evidence

Supplementary memorandum by Gallaher Group Plc (SP 15A)

  During the hearing of evidence by the Health Committee on Thursday 20 October, the Committee indicated that it would be interested in being provided with more information on certain points. As a result, I am writing this short note to explain these in more detail, which I hope the Committee will find helpful.


  As I outlined to the Committee, Gallaher believes that any legislation should allow for separate ventilated smoking rooms in public and work places. This would achieve the aim of separating non-smokers from smokers and also create an environment in which staff, in licensed premises for example, would have a limited exposure to second-hand smoke.

  In this context, Gallaher, and other principal companies of the TMA are working with the Buildings Services Research and Information Association (BSRIA) to undertake studies in an environmental chamber to demonstrate, under laboratory conditions, the effectiveness of fresh air ventilation at a variety of air flow rates in reducing ETS contaminants (GO, PM2.5 and Volatile Organic Compounds).

  We will, of course be happy to share the results with the Committee, when the tests are completed. Furthermore, we are sure BSRIA would be happy to give a demonstration to the Committee. We believe that the findings of this testing could be used as the basis for measuring the efficiency of installed ventilation systems and help establish an agreed Air Quality Standard.


  Gallaher Group Plc is a major employer in Northern Ireland and Cardiff, where we have manufacturing facilities that produce cigarettes and cigars and other tobacco products, not only for the UK, but for export globally.

  Associated with our manufacturing operations is a research and development facility employing circa 150 people in the UK. In order to ensure compliance with UK, European Directives and regulations and the legal requirements of non-member states, we are required to undertake product and quality control testing.

We do this alongside our own internal policies and procedures that are designed to ensure that our products not only comply with mandatory legal requirements, but also are of the quality that our consumers expect.

  The work programme also involves panels of smokers who volunteer to smoke products to test their quality and other characteristics. This work is essential in circumstances where mandatory requirements require changes in product specifications. Again, this work and testing is undertaken in a controlled environment.

  In response to the Government's Consultation on the Smokefree Elements of the Health Improvement and Protection Bill, Gallaher, through our trade association, the Tobacco Manufacturers' Association, requested a particular exemption for the premises of tobacco manufacturers and their technical suppliers, in clearly designated areas where smoking is an essential part of operations, such as testing. Without that exemption, the work will need to be undertaken elsewhere within Europe, with the risk of job losses in Cardiff and Northern Ireland.

  As I stated to the Committee, Gallaher welcomes these opportunities to have constructive dialogue, as we are of the firm view that it is only through consultation and co-operation with Governments and public health bodies that issues surrounding smoking can be best addressed and that fair, reasonable and practical solutions can be achieved.

  If, during the further consideration of tobacco related matters, any members of your Committee would like to visit our factory in Northern Ireland and receive a detailed presentation on our R&D facility, please let me know. Finally, please do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of further assistance to you or any member of the Committee.

November 2005

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