Plain Packages Will be Sold in Australia

Published on November 2nd, 2010 11:23

Teenagers believe that smoking “won’t be something cool anymore” if it involves graphic warnings placed on plain packages, according to a research that confirms the change proposed for Australia.

The first results of a New Zealand-based study, presented in Sydney, have corroborated the hopes of public health officials and the fears of the tobacco manufacturers.

The research discovered that removing from cigarette packages their flaring logos, and bright colors, impelled most teenagers to pay attention solely on the warning label and examine the “purpose” of tobacco consumption. “A good many of teenagers stated that the behavior won’t look so cool anymore, as it looses its purpose. They think that smoking and namely the brands you smoke say something about you and getting rid of that got rid of the purpose of smoking.” stated Lisa Webb, researcher and masters candidate from the University of Auckland.

plain package cigarettes

Me. Webb surveyed 80 pupils, aged 14 to 16, who were a mix of smokers, those who have tried it and those who had never smoked.
When showed with traditional cigarette packages, she stated the teenagers observed the health warnings could blend in and it was easier to notice the positive rather than the negative on the packet.

Then teenagers were shown an example of plain cigarette package, as is proposed for Australia, listing only the brand in a generic font next to a large and graphic health warning. “They paid attention to the graphic image. Most of teenagers stated that they would not want to smoke a cigarette from a plain package, and they also presupposed their friend would not be drawn to cigarettes if that was the case. I can say that we faced a very strong reaction to the plain package,” Ms Webb said.

Ms Webb demonstrated the preliminary results of her study at the Asia Pacific Conference on Tobacco or Health 2010. Her findings contradict to tobacco manufacturers claim that implementing plain package would not lessen smoking rates, and it adds weight to the federal government’s plan to mandate plain packages of cigarettes sold in Australia by July 2012. “This study showed one more time why the tobacco manufacturers were against to the move.

The manufacturers are reacting so harshly because they really use their packages to attract new smokers. They were doing it for a long time and now with the plain packages they will do not have opportunity to attract smoker,” said Professor Ian Olver, chief executive of the Cancer Council Australia.

Australia’s recent tobacco levy increase had lowered the population’s smoking rate to about 17%, and the aim was to reach 10% by 2020.

By Joanna Johnson, Staff Writer. Copyright © 2010 All rights reserved.

Related tags: cigarette pack | plain package | cigarettes sales | smoking law | anti-smoking

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