The internet was set ablaze over the past few days following a report by Abril Uno that Phillip Morris, the largest producer of cigarettes in the world, would be dabbling marijuana.

The company would supposedly be releasing marijuana cigarettes, aptly titled Marlboro M. They would be made available for legal purchase through licensed outlets in the state of Colorado, where it is legal to buy and sell the drug.

There’s just one little catch The story is a hoax.

One major clue as to the joke should have been the name of the source. Abril Uno translates to “April 1st”. Hmm, it looks like the best April Fools jokes don’t happen in April at all.

Then there was a reference to Serafin Norcik, who was named in the article as the VP of Marketing for Philip Morris. In actuality, there is no Serafin Norcik.

According to the non existent Norcik, Philip Morris had been in touch with major drug cartels, looking for them to mass produce marijuana for their cigarettes.

Adding fuel to the fire was a photoshopped image that some took to be a preview of the product.

How many years until this is not a joke? More than 3, less than 10 is my guess

Clara Jeffery ( ClaraJeffery) January 26, 2014

If Marlboro is actually gonna start producing legit ‘marijuana cigarettes’ then I will start smoking weed again

Gareth ( garethainslie) January 26, 2014

I’m kinda skeptical about the Marlboro marijuana cigarettes..

Vince Eat World ( SirTightJeans) January 23, 2014

Could the cigarette giant eventually get into the marijuana racket? I wouldn’t rule it out. The weed business is booming in Colorado (there have been shortages reported) and it could see other states follow suit and legalize the drug. There are already regulations in place regarding who can smoke and where, so it wouldn’t be unfamiliar territory.

According to Snopes, Philip Morris and other cigarette companies have been preparing for the eventual legalization of the drug in the United States.

This particular joke may be on enthusiastic pot smokers for now, but there’s no telling who’ll have the last laugh. Should marijuana be legalized, it’s very likely that drug dealers will have to face cut throat competition from big business.

Image via PolicyMic Twitter

Hoax: marlboro marijuana cigarettes do not exist –

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A January 2014 article entitled “Phillip Morris Introduces Marlboro Marijuana Cigarettes” was posted on the website Abril Uno (“April First”), and received a high amount of social media sharing. This official sounding post reads, “Phillip Morris, the world s biggest cigarette producer, announced today that they will join the marijuana legalization bandwagon and start producing marijuana cigarettes. Marketed under the brand Marlboro M , the cigarettes will be made available for sale through marijuana licensed outlets in the state of Colorado, and the state of Washington when it becomes commercially legal there later this year.”

The disclaimer for that website, however, clearly describing itself as “a satire, parody and spoof web publication&#8230 All articles contained herein are fiction (“fake”), untrue, and for entertainment only.”

Many readers sharing the article were apparently unaware of its satirical origins.

With the popularity of the fake article above, some readers have also shared a story posted by FictioNews entitled, “Marlboro Making Medical Marijuana” which contains the image above. That article dates to April 20, 2011, and is also a work of fiction.

Note that we no longer link to viral satirical or bogus stories such as this, for this reason.

Speculation Philip Morris USA Statements

After the November 2012 elections, in which Colorado and Washington legalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana, CBS News asked Philip Morris USA about the possibility of a marijuana based Marlboro cigarette. Spokesman Bill Phelps, while noting that they don’t comment or speculate “on future business” stated that “tobacco companies are in the business of manufacturing and marketing tobacco products.”

In January 2014, there had been no change in strategy announced by any big tobacco companies, as speculation continued regarding pot related products.

Fake Photos

The Marlboro marijuana photos in circulation have been in existence long before Washington and Colorado voted to legalize marijuana. Back in 2009, this forum discussed “Marlboro Greens” which were rumored to exist in Amsterdam at the time. That turned out to be false. Another popular photo (above) was created as part of a photo editing contest. That photo, however, is often circulated with the Worth1000 logo cropped out, leading some readers to believe it is a real product.

Other photos have depicted “Marlboro Blend No. 420&#8243 or “Marlboro Greens.” These have typically been created as a concept or as a joke.

Video Rebuttal

We posted a short video rebuttal to this rumor, which you can watch below.

Bottom Line

There are no Marlboro marijuana cigarettes. Rumors suggesting such a product have stemmed from satire, speculation, and fake photos.