Plain tobacco packaging may ‘put off’ smokers, study finds

24 January 2013

Tobacco control experts from around the world estimate that 2 years after the introduction of generic packaging the number of adult smokers would be reduced by one percentage point (in the UK – from 21 to 20%), and the percentage of children trying smoking would be reduced by three percentage points (in the UK – from 27 to 24%). The Cambridge research was published in the journal BMC Public Health.
For the study, 33 tobacco control experts from the UK (14), Australasia (12) and North America (7) were recruited. Professionals in these regions were targeted because these countries are currently considering (or have recently implemented) plain packaging for tobacco products. They were then interviewed about how plain packaging – packaging without brand imagery or promotional text and using standardised formatting – might impact the rates of smoking in adults and children (Packaging News, 24 January 2013).