Consumer Protection in Sub-Saharan Africa: An Exploration of “Big Tobacco” Marketing Practices

Consumer Protection in Sub-Saharan Africa: An Exploration of “Big Tobacco” Marketing Practices

Nnamdi O. Madichie (London School of Business and Management, UK) and Abdullah Promise Opute (GPROM Academic and Management Solutions, Germany)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-0282-1.ch014
OnDemand PDF Download:
$30.00
List Price: $37.50

Abstract

This chapter explores two key areas of the text – notably “children as consumers: A focus on developing countries” and “consumerism and consumer protection in developing nations.” By integrating these two streams the chapter highlights the implications of the marketing activities undertaken by tobacco companies (i.e. Big Tobacco) in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) for consumer protection in these countries and especially in the case of vulnerable groups such as children. By highlighting the marketing practices of global tobacco giants exploiting the weak regulatory environment in SSA, notably Malawi, Mauritius, and Nigeria. The choice of countries is based on a BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) documentary, which highlighted the marketing practices of Big Tobacco in these countries. In terms of structure, the chapter focuses primarily on the promotion element of the traditional marketing-mix as well as the public policy implications emerging from these.
Chapter Preview
Top

1. Introduction

Consumerism is a social and economic order and ideology that encourages the acquisition of goods and services in ever-greater amounts. Early criticisms of consumerism are present in the works of Thorstein Veblen (1899). Veblen’s subject of examination, the newly emergent middle class arising at the turn of the twentieth century, comes to fruition by the end of the twentieth century through the process of globalization. In this sense, consumerism is usually considered a part of media culture – a subject that resonates with the cool exhibited in the marketing of tobacco companies. In the domain of politics, the term “consumerism” has also been used to refer to something quite different called the consumerists movement, consumer protection or consumer activism, which seeks to protect and inform consumers by requiring such practices such as ‘honest packaging’ and advertising, product guarantees, and improved safety standards (see Table 1 for some seminal papers on consumerism). In this sense it is a political movement or a set of policies aimed at regulating the products, services, methods, and standards of manufacturers, sellers, and advertisers in the interests of the buyer.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Sub-Saharan Africa: A term with both geographical and political explanation. Geographically, it is the area of the continent of Africa that lies south of the Sahara Desert. Politically, it consists of all African countries that are fully or partially located south of the Sahara (excluding Sudan, even though Sudan sits in the Eastern portion of the Sahara Desert).

Big Tobacco: The ‘big 6’ global tobacco producers and/ or marketers who constitute over 80% of the global market – notably (i) China Tobacco, 37% (ii) Philip Morris 17%; (iii) British American Tobacco 12%; (iv) Japan Tobacco 10%; (v) Imperial Tobacco 5%; and (vi) Altria 3%.

Guerilla Marketing: Refers to the illegal practice of ‘baiting’ consumers with unrealistically low prices to bring them into the store, and then trying to sell them higher-priced goods on the pretext that the advertised bargain-priced goods are sold out. The term was popularized by Jay Levinson.

Consumerism: A social and economic order and ideology that encourages the acquisition of goods and services in ever-greater amounts.

Consumer Protection: Also sometimes referred to as consumer activism, is a political movement or a set of policies aimed at regulating the products, services, methods, and standards of manufacturers, sellers, and advertisers in the interests of the buyer. It seeks to protect and inform consumers by requiring such practices such as ‘honest packaging’ and advertising, product guarantees, and improved safety standards.

Complete Chapter List

Search this Book:
Reset