“We continue to believe that the plaintiff’s patents are invalid and that IQOS does not infringe on those patents,” Altria said in its statement. “We’re complying with the ITC order. We’ve been focused on our contingency plans surrounding sales and distribution and have been in communication with PMI on their domestic manufacturing plans.”
“We’re communicating with IQOS consumers regarding removal of IQOS and HeatSticks from the market, why this is occurring and that we’re working on contingency plans to make these products available again at retail,” the company said.
Philip Morris International was spun off as a separate publicly traded company from Altria in 2008 and does business only in overseas markets, while Altria operates businesses in the United States through subsidiaries such as Philip Morris USA, U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co. and cigar maker John Middleton.
A spokesperson for Philip Morris International said Tuesday that the company’s contingency plans include domestic manufacturing of the product, but the company cannot share further details at this point.
“We are disappointed in the disregard not only of the scientific evidence supporting IQOS, but also the wishes of American adults who are searching for a better alternative to continued smoking, which should have been the most important consideration of all,” the company said.
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