Come January, Camel's staff will no longer be able to smoke cigarettes, pipes or cigars at their desks. Getty

Possibly the last bastion of smoking in the workplace, the makers of Camel cigarettes has finally banned smoking in its offices.

To many it will seem absurd that the company, Reynolds American Inc, based in North Carolina, has permitted its staff to puff away at their desks for this long.

But the announcement on Thursday, (23 October), means employees will no longer be able to smoke cigarettes, cigars or pipes (yes, some people were smoking pipes at their desks in 2014) in the offices, conferences rooms, hallways and elevators.

The ban comes into force in January – only once the company builds the indoor smoking areas that will accommodate the smokers.

Smoking is, however, already banned on factory floors, in cafeterias and fitness centres.

The new policy "will better accommodate both non-smokers and smokers who work in and visit our facilities", a spokesman for Reynolds American said.

"We're just better aligning out tobacco policies with the realities of what you're seeing in society today."

Electronic cigarettes and other smokeless tobacco products (i.e. snuff) will still be permitted inside the main office spaces.

The company, who most famously manufactures the Camel brand, also makes Pall Mall cigarettes, Grizzly smokeless tobacco and Vuse-branded e-cigarettes.