Navigation Links
Cigarette Packaging Still Too Alluring, Studies Find
Date:5/27/2011

By Jenifer Goodwin
HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, May 27 (HealthDay News) -- Savvy tobacco companies are using color and other design elements to circumvent new U.S. regulations that crack down on misleading cigarette packaging, researchers say.

As of June 2010, tobacco companies were prohibited from using terms such as "light," "mild" or "low," which minimize the dangers of smoking, in advertising and on cigarette packaging. But tobacco companies have found other terms, colors and even numbers to create an illusion of safety, according to several new studies from the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, N.Y.

The researchers determined that certain design features -- light- or pastel-colored packaging associated with mild cigarettes, for example, and carefully chosen numbers -- enable cigarette makers to skirt the laws.

"Though the removal of descriptor terms like 'mild,' 'light' and 'low' are a good start, manufacturers have basically replaced these terms with terms such as 'gold' and 'silver,' and changed the shading on packs to continue to mislead consumers," said study author Maansi Bansal-Travers, a behavioral research scientist at Roswell Park.

Another expert agreed that cigarette makers are using code language to falsely convince consumers that some cigarettes are less deadly than others.

"From international evidence, we know smokers who see white, silver or light colored packs are likely to associate them with lower harm products; blue packs with mild products; red with regular [full-flavor] products; and green with menthol," said Janet Hoek, a professor of marketing at University of Otago in New Zealand. "Pack colors have become quite strongly paired in smokers," and they now recognize them without any verbal descriptions, she added.

Hoek, who was not involved with the research, is an expert on tobacco regulation and other issues.

The three studies, published in the June issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, conclude that cigarettes should be sold in standardized plain packs with coloring restricted much like wording.

In one study, about 190 smokers were shown six cigarette packages of Marlboro or Peter Jackson, a brand sold in Australia. The packages, in different shades and colors, had all text removed other than the brand name.

Participants who said they were concerned with health, tar, nicotine and safety overwhelmingly picked the "whitest" package, such as an ivory-colored pack of Peter Jackson's.

In a second experiment, researchers showed about 200 smokers and 200 nonsmokers pictures of cigarette packages that differed by a single element, either color (for example, light blue vs. dark blue); number ("10" vs. "6" ); or the size of the health warning.

About 87 percent said they'd choose the lighter colored package over the darker one if they were trying to reduce their health risks. The lighter colored package was also strongly associated with smoother taste and less tar.

About 89 percent of those concerned about health said they'd pick the package with the number "6" vs. "10," while 88 percent believed the packaging marked with a "10" had more tar than one marked with a "6."

About 81 percent thought a package labeled "full flavor" had more tar than one with the word "silver" on the front, while 78 percent said they would choose the "silver" pack to reduce health risks.

A third study tested reactions to proposed "corrective" statements about tobacco company misinformation that the U.S. federal court in the Department of Justice case against cigarette manufacturers is seeking to slap on cigarette packages.

Study participants temporarily increased their knowledge about smoking risks, but the researchers concluded that people need sustained exposure for such messages to sink in.

These efforts stem in part from the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009, which granted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration broad powers to regulate the manufacturing, advertising and promotion of tobacco products as a means of protecting public health.

The United States is following the lead of other countries in cracking down on misleading cigarette packaging. More than a dozen nations have stringently regulated cigarette packaging for years, with some requiring gruesome images on the packaging.

Starting in 2012, U.S. cigarette makers may have to cover half the packages with more graphic warning labels and vivid images of the dangers of smoking. The FDA is still mulling which labels to choose.

"Despite the graphic warning labels, which will be great progress in educating consumers about the risks of smoking, there is still 50 percent of the pack that can be used to mislead consumers on the relative risks of their products," Bansal-Travers said.

Marketing experts agree that the new legislation may not keep the packages from conveying subtle but powerful messages about the cigarettes inside.

"Packaging is what sells the product at the point of purchase," said Jeremy Kees, an assistant professor of marketing at Villanova School of Business.

"Up to 70 to 80 percent of consumer decisions are actually made in the store at the point of purchase," Kees said. "Of course, advertising and other promotions are important, but the packaging is the unspoken salesperson for the product."

More information

View the FDA's cigarette packaging proposal here.

SOURCES: Maansi Bansal-Travers, Ph.D., behavioral research scientist, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, N.Y.; Janet Hoek, Ph.D., professor, marketing, University of Otago, New Zealand; June 2011 American Journal of Preventive Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. New Report: $1 Cigarette Tax Increase Would Raise $418.8 Million for Texas and Cut Youth Smoking
2. New Report: $1 Cigarette Tax Increase Would Raise $18.6 Million for Montana and Cut Youth Smoking
3. New Report: $1 Cigarette Tax Increase Would Raise $24.8 Million for Wyoming and Cut Youth Smoking
4. New Report: $1 Cigarette Tax Increase Would Raise $43.3 Million for Utah and Cut Youth Smoking
5. New Report: $1 Cigarette Tax Increase Would Raise $113.9 Million for Colorado and Cut Youth Smoking
6. New Report: $1 Cigarette Tax Increase Would Raise $65.3 Million for Iowa and Cut Youth Smoking
7. Cigars, Pipes No Healthy Alternative to Cigarettes
8. E-Cigarette Maker Green Smoke Tells FDA to Back Off!
9. New Mexico Cigarette Tax Increase Delivers Victory for Kids and Taxpayers, But Increase Needs to Be Permanent
10. Utah Cigarette Tax Increase Delivers Victory for Kids and Taxpayers
11. The Electronic Cigarette Company Challenges the Rt Hon Andy Burnham MP to Ban All Tobacco Products on 21st June 2010
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Cigarette Packaging Still Too Alluring, Studies Find
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Many families have long-term insurance that covers care for a ... waiver for care if the client has a cognitive impairment diagnosis. , “What ... is often waived, so the benefits from their insurance start immediately,” said Mechell Vieira, ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Talented ... the lowdown on sciatica in a new episode of "Success Files," which is ... events and innovation and investigates each subject in-depth with passion and integrity. , ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... CitiDent and San Francisco dentists, Dr. ... Oventus O2Vent technology. As many as 18 million Americans are estimated to suffer ... Oral appliances can offer significant relief to about 75 percent of people with ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... , ... Asante, a nationally recognized health system in southern ... home health joint venture through an agreement, effective October 1, 2017, to create ... health company with Asante, delivering clinically integrated care, for the past eight years. ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... Wesley Chapel, FL (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... Chapel is holding a treadmill relay – Miles by Moonlight to raise money for ... by donating $300 or more. , Teams will work together to keep their ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/25/2017)... PROVIDENCE, R.I. , Sept. 25, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... immunogenicity assessment, vaccine design, and immune-engineering today announced ... focused on the development of personalized therapeutic cancer ... and has provided exclusive access to enabling technologies ... MSc Eng., MBA will lead EpiVax Oncology as ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... , Sept. 22, 2017  As the latest Obamacare ... Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Lindsey Graham ... that the medical device industry is in an odd ... tax, the 2.3% excise tax on medical device sales ... also want covered patients, increased visits and hospital customers ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... medical device company developing a non-invasive, robotically assisted, platform therapy that uses pulsed sound energy ... ... Jim Bertolina, PhD ... Tom Tefft ... executive Josh Stopek , PhD, who has led R&D and business development teams at ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: