Tourists have complained that the souvenir “Beijing” brand of cigarettes they were shopping in the tourist area Dashilan shops are fake. The brand was made Beijing Cigarette Factory (BCF), and cigarette production was discontinued in 2009, an employee of the company.
However, Beijing opened a pack of cigarettes sold in many shops in Dashilan, in the Xicheng District. Cigarettes must be fake, said the anonymous employee BCF, they stopped production in 2009, to focus on the brand Zhongnanhai.
“After more than four years since the last production, I doubt that they are our products,” she said. There is little BCF can do if they find a pack of cigarettes, marked its brand and name of the plant for sale, she said.
On Tuesday, there were about seven stores that sell these fake cigarettes along with other souvenirs as traditional Beijing snacks and accessories. Cigarette packs branded as “Peking” is also called the BCF as a producer. They were placed at a price of 10 to 23 yuan ($ 1.6-3.6) per pack.
Employee surnamed Zhang, from Daoxiangcun, popular traditional Beijing snack shop, said that these products are the old local brand of cigarettes available in Beijing, and many tourists buy them to take home as a gift.
“In contrast to other local brands, such as Zhongnanhai, the type of cigarettes you can only find here,” she said. Zhang said that the cigarettes were still being produced, but she was not sure when they were released for sale.
“All the real cigarette products,” she said, an opinion echoed by staff in other tourist shops in the area. An anonymous employee of the Xicheng Tobacco Monopoly Administration officials said that they had received several complaints from tourists who called their hot line.
“The area Dashilan difficult to manage because of its mobility. We’ll investigate, and shop owners will be punished and fined if the case is confirmed,” she said. “Based on previous cases, the source of cigarettes may be outside of the city,” she said.
She would not comment on the action to be taken against those who produce counterfeit cigarettes. In 2012, Xicheng district prosecutors convicted five people, transportation and sale of counterfeit tobacco products and alcoholic beverages, Beijing Evening News reported in April 2012.
It is difficult to prevent such crimes, as sources of production are hard to find, the report said.