ASI Presidential Promo Poll Predicts Super Tuesday Winners
While the presidential candidates on both sides of the aisle prepare for primaries in 12 states on Super Tuesday (March 1), ASI is conducting its own polling this week to identify potential winners. We’re asking voters in each of the Super Tuesday voting states (non-caucus states) the same question: If you received a bumper sticker from each of the presidential candidates, which one would you be most willing to put on your car?
U.S. Rep Introduces Bill to Limit Drug Advertising
A Connecticut representative has introduced a bill that would restrict direct-to-consumer advertising by pharmaceutical companies. Rosa DeLauro, a Democrat representing Connecticut’s third Congressional district, has introduced the “Responsibility in Drug Advertising Act,” which would require a delay of three years on any advertising of newly approved prescription drugs. Read Article
Which Promo Products Do Students Grab Most?
Nobody loves free stuff more than college students, so it’s no surprise that hundreds flocked to the spring career fair at the University of Pennsylvania on February 19. About 40 companies set up shop with representatives on hand and plenty of promotional products to give out. Read Article
The Joe Show: Unique Promo Products Are In The Cards
In this episode of The Joe Show, Product Editor Joe Haley has a collection of fun, distinctive promotional products on hand for your next campaign, from playing card decks and a striped cotton tote, to a six-function pocket knife and embroidered sneakers. WATCH THE JOE SHOW
Meet The Counselor Hot 25
Who are the movers and shakers that are reinvigorating the industry? The members of Counselor’s annual Hot 25 list. Exclusively online this week, Counselor will reveal the members of this year’s group – five per day in alphabetical order by first name. Check back each day to see all of their stories. MEET THIS YEAR'S HOT 25
Montreal Passes Official Plastic Bag Ban
Montreal mayor Denis Coderre has announced that the city will officially ban single-use plastic bags beginning January 1, 2018, giving consumers and businesses a little less than two years to adjust to the new requirements. "You will understand that our plan is the result of extensive analysis and thoughtful reflection," Coderre said after the official announcement. "Lightweight bags, which are used by the billions, are volatile and represent a clear environmental concern." While six smaller municipalities in Canada have already implemented a plastic bag ban, Montreal is the largest Canadian city to date to do so.
The ban pertains to lightweight plastic shopping bags, those that are less than 50 microns (0.05 millimeters) thick, as well as bags that are oxo-degradable, oxo-fragmentable, oxo-biodegradable and biodegradable. Certain bags are exempt, such as those used for fresh vegetables, dry cleaning or medications, while thicker recyclable plastic bags, which the city says can be reused 150 times, will be available for sale at Montreal stores for about 5 cents.
Local government has plans to run a public education program prior to the ban to raise awareness and acquire public support. The city says the two-year transition period will allow bag suppliers and stores to use up their current inventory, and will give members of the plastic bag manufacturing industry, made up of 23 companies employing over 1,000 people on the island of Montreal, time to transition to other types of production.
"In a few years, these plastic bags used by billions worldwide will be a thing of another era," said Coderre to The Montreal Gazette.
The Greener Footprints Society, a not-for-profit environmental advocacy group based in British Columbia, states that Canadians use between 9 and 15 billion plastic shopping bags a year.
However, the announcement has not come without opposition. Business owners in Montreal have cited a likely drop in local commerce, arguing that the ban will compel consumers to shop less frequently while purchasing more items during each shopping trip, most likely on weekends when they have easier access to permissible bags stored at home. They have also suggested that pedestrian and bicycle traffic will decline significantly, since the ban will make impulsive shopping more difficult for customers who will need to have their own reusable bags in-hand or be willing to purchase bags at the retailer.
"We are disappointed because we showed a survey to the committee that said 54% of our members were against a total ban," said François Vincent, director of provincial affairs for the Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses, to the United Kingdom's Independent. "[Our members] were for the objective of reducing plastic bags for a better environment, but they were afraid of the impact on the economy because it will cost them more."
Montreal was one of the first cities in Canada to impose a 5-cent charge for plastic bags in 2007. Plastic bag use was reduced by 50%, which was deemed a success by Montreal's local government. A similar plastic bag ban and 5-cent charge were introduced by Toronto's city council in 2013, but was overturned the same year. Plastic bags have not yet been officially prohibited in that city, the largest in Canada.
Earlier this February, the city of Brossard became the third municipality in the Quebec province to implement a similar ban, which will begin next September. However, the Canadian Plastic Bag Association sent the city a legal warning, calling the move "an abusive and unreasonable abuse of power" and citing a lack of public consultation before the decision came down.
J. Crew Recalls Girls' Jackets
Apparel retailer J. Crew has recalled girls' puffer jackets because of a potential choking hazard. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the buttons on the front of the jacket can detach and be swallowed by children. J. Crew has received four reports of buttons detaching, but no injuries have been reported at this time.
The jackets were available through the company's Crewcuts line. Over 16,000 jackets were sold in the U.S. from last August to January. The puffer jacket features padded geometric squares, a faux fur hood trim lining and six buttons on the front of the coat. The jackets were available in three colors and sold in girls sizes 2-14. They were manufactured in China and sold exclusively in J. Crew and Crewcuts stores and catalogs and at www.jcrew.com.
The CPSC said consumers should immediately stop using the jackets and return them to J. Crew or Crewcuts for a full refund. J. Crew is directly contacting known consumers who have purchased the jackets.
Take The State of the Industry Survey
Counselor is currently polling professionals in the industry – both distributors and suppliers – to find out how the market did in 2015 and to get impressions on where the industry is headed in 2016. We need your input. Please take some time to go to www.StateoftheIndustry.com and complete the annual State of the Industry survey. Your responses will remain anonymous, and you'll be helping to create Counselor's annual State of the Industry report.
In The News
Kaeser & Blair (asi/238600) has completed a total conversion of its lighting systems from fluorescent to LED, which involved more than 350 lighting fixtures containing 1,200 individual lighting instruments. The company estimates electrical consumption will be reduced by two-thirds, and the clearer LED lighting has also improved visibility in work areas.
People On The Move
iClick (asi/62124) welcomes Cynthia Troiani as regional sales manager for the South territory, covering TX, OK, AR, LA, MS, TN, AL, GA, NC, SC and FL. In addition, the company has hired Melinda Marr as regional sales manager for the Midwest territory, covering ND, SD, NE, KS, MO, IL, IN, MI, WI, MN and IA.
The Magnet Group (asi/68507) has hired industry veteran Cathy Cummings to key accounts.
Click here to see all of this month's industry personnel announcements.
REGISTER NOW FOR ASI SHOW CHICAGO & GET YOUR $10 GALA TICKET ASI Show® Chicago is taking over Chicago's premier blues club, Buddy Guy's Legends, and as an ASI member, you can purchase tickets* for this exclusive party for just $10 each!
Don't miss out on:
A warm, friendly ambiance for great networking
A great dinner featuring recipes from Buddy's childhood in Baton Rouge
The best blues music over a state-of-the-art audio system
Pool tables and an open bar
Register today for ASI Show Chicago, July 12-14 at McCormick Place using promo code PROMOGRAM and order your $10 gala tickets to Buddy Guy's Legends!
For more information on ASI Show Chicago, call (800) 546-3300 or visit www.asishow.com.
*ASI distributor and decorator member companies who register by March 22, 2016, can order up to two tickets to the Gala Celebration for only $10 each (a $100 value per ticket). Additional tickets will be $49 each through June 14, 2016, then $69 each from June 15 through July 11, 2016. Tickets on site will be $89 each.
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