Remember when you were little and your parents bought you a pack of candy cigarettes? The pack contained little white sticks, perfect for those little fingers to practice holding so when you grew up that cigarette felt very comfortable between your fingers. Some of the sticks even had a little red tip so it would look like the “cigarette” was lit. Perfect little device to practice smoking, that is until the candy dissolved or you got tired of “smoking” and ate the entire box of sticks for the sugar. Some of the packs had little tubes of bubble gum instead of sticks of candy. If you blew out on the tube, a small puff of “smoke” came out. Same idea as the sticks, different delivery. The candy wasn’t even that good, but you were developing a product loyalty towards the real brand. If your parents weren’t smokers, they probably didn’t consider buying you this candy. But the fact is your parents were probably the ones who bought you your first practice cigarettes. Sad, isn’t it?
Look carefully at the above display of candy and you can easily pick out your favorite brands of cigarettes. “Lucky Stark” and “Target” closely resemble the trademark Lucky Strike brand, right down to the blue seal on the top. The “Kamikaze” pack looks like an old style Lucky Strike pack.
“Kings,” “Mustang,” and “Envoy” all have the chevron design, similar to the current Marlboro cigarette pack. “Round UP” and “Rancheros” may not have the design, but it is reminisce of the Marlboro cowboy, similar to the 1986 advertisement on the right. “Rancheros” even has the gold ribbon pull strip to remove the cellophane from the pack.
Viceroy cigarettes are represented by the “Vicerey” candy cigarettes and the “Viceray” magic color bubble gum pack. The “Viceray” candy cigarettes on the right weren’t included the the top photo, but were included under the product name when researching the cigarette packs on Trinketsandtrash.org. Notice how closely the candy pack matches the real pack of cigarettes below it.
One pack of candy cigarettes at the top is called “Attack,” and features an image seen on an electrocardiogram. The ECG is the most common cardiac test and checks for cardiac abnormalities such as coronary artery disease or a prior heart attack. Smoking is a major cause of cardiovascular disease, and also causes artherosclerosis, a buildup of fatty deposits in the arteries. If you smoke, you may have an ECG performed more often by your doctor.
Perhaps the tobacco industry should demand that the “Attack” brand of candy cigarettes be removed because of truth in advertising. The tobacco industry did go to court to demand that the graphic images of heart attacks and other truths of smoking not be allowed on cigarette packages as it would violate their freedom of speech and essentially promote an anti-smoking campaign on each pack. Plain packaging of cigarettes in the U.S. is currently on hold. In the meantime, let’s keep selling candy cigarettes to promote how cool smoking is to kids.