Monday, May 24, 2004

cigarette packaging

back when i was a smoker, every time i saw an anti-smoking advertisement, i would light one up out of a sense of solidarity. i think that the anti-smoking packaging scheme currently employed by canada and some european nations would have stopped my nascent unionist tendancies cold.

cigarette packages in canada are required to place anti-smoking literature over 50% of the package. the iconography often shows diseased tissues and is quite graphic, as you can see in the link above. inside the packages are tips on how to quit smoking.

the campaign seems to be successful:
  • 44% of smokers say the warnings increased their motivation to quit
  • 58% said the warnings made them think more about the health effects of smoking
  • 62% say the new warnings make the packages look less attractive


from a cnn.com article:
  • 43% of smokers and 40 percent of nonsmokers said they are more concerned about the health effects of smoking because of the new warnings
  • 21% of smokers said they have been tempted on one or more occasions to have a cigarette but decided not to because of the new warnings
  • 27% of smokers said they smoke less inside their home because of the new warnings
  • 35% of smokers and 34 percent of nonsmokers said they know more about the health effects of smoking than they did before the new warnings
  • 48% of nonsmokers said the new warnings made them feel better about being a nonsmoker
  • 17% of smokers said they have put their cigarette pack away at least once because they did not want others to see the warning
  • 24% of smokers said they have at least once put a cardboard sleeve over their pack or transferred cigarettes to another container
  • 18% of smokers said they have on at least one occasion asked for a different package of cigarettes when purchasing them because they did not like the warning on the package first offered
  • In addition, smokers and nonsmokers identified the warning depicting a diseased mouth and the picture of a lung tumor as most effective at discouraging smoking.


however, as you can see from the fact that people transfer the cigarettes to different containers, there is a niche industry that has grown to serve the needs of smokers who do not want to be reminded of the consequences of their actions. apparently, one french company makes a cardboard sleeve to place over your pack that is emblazoned with the image of che guevara, which i am dying to see a picture of, but i couldn't find it...the closest i got was this picture of che guevara rolling papers:



others have started distributing stickers over the internet that you can print out at home and stick over the images. some good ones are here:

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