There are currently two major trade shows for the tobacco industry. One of these is Tobacco Plus Expo. This years TPE was held in Las Vegas, Nevada on March 3rd and 4th. They say that "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas". As far as snus and reduced harm/modified risk tobacco products go, this show should have never happened at all; in Las Vegas or anywhere else.
Attendance was down at Tobacco Plus Expo in 2009 compared to 2008. This was blamed by some on the show being in New Orleans which despite the scars of Katrina, is still a beautiful and haunting city to me.
Since Las Vegas is still the convention capital of the United States despite President Obama's pleas to Americans to "stop wasting their money in Las Vegas" (or even on vacations in general), the hosting city could not be blamed for the low turnout of both exhibitors and attendees.
As a police escort led my armoured limousine down Canal Street towards the New Orleans Morial Convention Center, you could still see the signs of Hurricane Katrina. Scattered condemned buildings; other homes and buildings still under reconstruction, but it was still New Orleans. Cracking the heavily tinted, bullet-proof window as we passed a group of restaurants, the mouth-watering aroma of Cajun food filled the limo. The old cemeteries with their beautiful, yet haunting mausoleums stood as though Katrina had never happened. It was good to be back.
Today was the opening day of Tobacco Plus Expo 2009; where tobacco and tobacco products manufacturers, distributors, retailers and VIP's like me gathered together, quoting the Show Directory, "Where relationships are established and business is done".
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