Manky lunged fag packets not denting smoking enough

22 January 2015

cigarette packets Ahead of similar moves over here in the UK, it looks like the whole 'shoving cigarettes into distressing or plain black packaging' thing seems to be working in Australia.

The British government looks set to vote on legislation at the next general election.

Australia have had the move in place since 2012, yet there's been some disagreement as to whether it has made a blind bit of difference.

Australian smokers have been used to buying their snouts in plain packets for a couple of years now, with its depictions of rotted teeth and mank-lung, and so naturally the antis are saying "Hurrah!" and the tobacco industry are saying "Pffft".

Figures from Australia's Bureau of Statistics and the Department of Health show that by just about all measures cigarette smoking has decreased since plain packaging was introduced.

It also says that expenditure on tobacco products fell by more than A$100m (£53m, $80m) between December 2012 and March 2014. The figures for the first quarter of 2014 were the lowest ever recorded.

And there's research that shows a considerable increase in the number of people calling quit-smoking advice lines. The cigarette companies are starting to see a decrease in sales, with Imperial Tobacco claiming the market has declined by 2-3%. Some suggest that this means smokers are fleeing to hooky suppliers with imported fags made up of barbed wire and sawdust. And with the average price for 20 fags in Australia being £12, who can blame them.

It is fair to say that the decline in smoking rates seems relatively small. But anti-smoking researchers say they were never expecting a huge drop-off, and that the plain packaging ruse was more about deterring new smokers from taking up the habit.

So ultimately, if it's hardly having much affect in Australia, will it really win people over here?


  • jim
    yeah cos i only by fags so i can flash the packet around - ya know bling bling innit bruv....
  • samuri
    Think it's about time these were banned.

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