Research and other resources related to tobacco packaging standards

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Type: Review

Plain tobacco packaging : A systematic review

Full review protocol

Lead Investigator: Gerard Hastings, Institute for Social Marketing, University of Stirling

This systematic review outlines findings from 37 studies that provide evidence of the impacts of plain tobacco packaging. The review was conducted following the publication of the March 2011 White Paper Healthy Lives: Healthy People which set out a renewed Tobacco Control Plan for England. One of the key actions identified in the plan was to consult on possible options to reduce the promotional impact of tobacco packaging, including plain packaging. This systematic review was commissioned to provide a comprehensive overview of evidence on the impact of plain packaging in order to inform a public consultation on the issue.


Type: Research Paper

Tobacco branding, plain packaging, pictorial warnings, and symbolic consumption.

Hoek J, Gendall P, Gifford H, Pirikahu G, McCool J, Pene G, Edwards R, Thomson G.
Qual Health Res. 2012 May;22(5):630-9. Epub 2011 Dec 27.

Smokers used tobacco brand imagery to define their social attributes and standing, and their connection with specific groups. Plain cigarette packaging usurped this process by undermining aspirational connotations and exposing tobacco products as toxic. Replacing tobacco branding with larger health warnings diminishes the cachet brand insignia creates, weakens the social benefits brands confer on users, and represents a potentially powerful policy measure.

Type: Research Paper

Graphic warning labels on plain cigarette packs: Will they make a difference to adolescents?

McCool J, Webb L, Cameron LD, Hoek J.
Soc Sci Med. 2012 Apr;74(8):1269-73. Epub 2012 Feb 17.

Graphic warning on a plain cigarette pack increased the attention paid to graphic warning labels and the overall perceptions of harm caused by cigarette smoking, and reduced the social appeal of cigarette smoking. This research offers evidence on how adolescents are appraising and interpreting graphic warning labels, and explores how dominant appraisals may affect the role graphic warning labels play in preventing smoking. Not only would plain cigarette packaging enhance the salience and impact of graphic warning labels, but it would potentially bolster the overall message that cigarette smoking is harmful.

Type: Research Paper

BMJ Open. 2012 Mar 1;2(2):e000784. Print 2012.

Public support for tobacco control policy extensions in Western Australia: a cross-sectional study.

Rosenberg M, Pettigrew S, Wood L, Ferguson R, Houghton S.

Around half of the survey respondents supported plain packaging and almost a further quarter reported being neutral on the issue. Only one in three smokers disagreed with the introduction of a plain packaging policy. A majority of respondents supported smoking bans at five of the six nominated venues, with support being strongest among those with children under the age of 15 years. The venues with the highest levels of support were those where smoke-free policies had already been voluntarily introduced by the venue managers, where children were most likely to be in attendance, and that were more limited in size.

Type: Research Paper

Do larger pictorial health warnings diminish the need for plain packaging of cigarettes?

Wakefield M, Germain D, Durkin S, Hammond D, Goldberg M, Borland R.
Addiction. 2012 Feb 28. doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2012.03774.x.

Plain packaging probably plays a superior role in undermining brand appeal and purchase intent to increasing health warning size. Policymakers should not rely solely upon large health warnings, which are designed primarily to inform consumers about smoking harms, to also reduce brand appeal: both strategies are likely to be required.

Type: Research Paper

Youth opinions of tobacco control in New Zealand: support for specific measures and the relationship with smoking behaviors among 14-15-year-olds.

Smith A, McCool J, Paynter J, Newcombe R.
Nicotine Tob Res. 2012 Apr;14(4):479-85. Epub 2012 Feb 6.

Our results demonstrate youth support for tobacco control interventions in NZ. Commercial access measures received the most support, while plain packaging and display bans were the least supported measures among young people. Young people’s attitudes toward tobacco control measures were found to be associated with smoking behavior; those who were opposed to measures were more likely to be susceptible to smoking or be current smokers.


Type: Research Paper

Do smokers in Europe think all cigarettes are equally harmful?

Brown A, McNeill A, Mons U, Guignard R.
Eur J Public Health. 2012 Feb;22 Suppl 1:35-40.

Our research suggests that the current European Tobacco Products Directive is inadequate in eliminating misperceptions about the relative risk of brand descriptors on cigarettes. There is therefore an urgent need to protect smokers in Europe from these misperceptions via stronger measures such as plain packaging regulations.


Type: Research Paper

The impact of structural packaging design on young adult smokers' perceptions of tobacco products.

Borland R, Savvas S, Sharkie F, Moore K.
Tob Control. 2011 Dec 13. [Epub ahead of print]

Pack shape and pack opening affect ever-smokers' perceptions of the packs and the cigarettes they contain. This means that they have the potential to create appeal and differentiate products and thus should be regulated.

Type: Research Paper 2011 (first published online 2009)

Making the Pack the Hero, Tobacco Industry Response to Marketing Restrictions in the UK: Findings from a Long-Term Audit

Crawford Moodie and Gerard Hastings  
Int J Ment Health Addiction (2011) 9:24–38

Packaging has become an increasingly important promotional tool for the tobacco industry as other channels have been shut off. It is clear therefore that any comprehensive and consistent tobacco strategy should include a mandatory move to generic packaging.

Type: Research Paper 2011

Young People's Perceptions of Cigarette Packaging and Plain Packaging: An Online Survey.
Nicotine Tob Res. 2011 Oct 24.
Moodie C, Ford A, Mackintosh AM, Hastings G.

What This Paper Adds
Packaging is one of the few remaining ways that tobacco companies can promote their products in dark markets.
Young people viewed the look of the packaging an important reason for choosing cigarettes and were also mislead about product strength and harm by pack color
The study has implications for the appearance of plain (nonbranded) packaging and provides some preliminary support for standardizing pack construction in terms of shape and method of opening.

Consumer perceptions of cigarette pack design in France: a comparison of regular, limited edition and plain packaging.
Gallopel-Morvan K, Moodie C, Hammond D, Eker F, Beguinot E, Martinet Y.
Tob Control. 2011 Oct 13. [Epub ahead of print]

Plain packs were perceived as less appealing than branded packs and considered a more effective means of preventing initiation and motivating cessation.
Limited edition packs, with novel pack designs or innovations, were perceived considerably more favourably than both plain packs and normal branded packs.

That novel pack design and innovation is viewed more positively than both PPs and regular branded packs helps explain the exorbitant sums spent by tobacco companies on altered packaging runs, including the purchasing and installation of new equipment for producing cigarettes in unique packaging. With most other marketing channels now closed to tobacco companies in France, as in many other jurisdictions, the pack has become the key marketing driver and limited edition packs appear to be central to this.

Measuring the effect of cigarette plain packaging on transaction times and selection errors in a simulation experiment.
Carter OB, Mills BW, Phan T, Bremner JR.
Tob Control. 2011 Sep 26

With the introduction of plain cigarette packaging, the tobacco retail industry predicts an additional 15e45 s per transaction, resulting in long queues, customer frustrations, diminished profits and job losses. However, rather than plain packs causing increased transaction times and more selection errors, our results clearly suggest there are likely to be over three times fewer selection errors and even a slight gain in time efficiency with the introduction of plain packaging, albeit one that rapidly diminishes over time. Our results suggest tobacco retailers hiring new staff might expect a 0.44 s time saving per transaction for the first 50 cigarette packs sold with the introduction of plain packaged cigarettes, after which time the employees will likely have memorised the location of most cigarettes regardless of whether they are coloured or plain. Thus, rather than losing money from inefficiency, we estimate that this time saving will result in tobacco retailers experiencing a one-off efficiency gain to the value of $A0.11 (US$0.12/GB£0.07) per new employee.

Type: Opinion/analysis

Effective beats dramatic: A commentary on Australia's plain packaging of cigarettes.
Sweanor DT.
Drug Alcohol Rev. 2011

Proposes that plain packaging be accompanied with "consumer acceptable nicotine risk reduction strategies"

Type: Opinion/analysis

Type: Opinion/analysis

Preventing tobacco companies from advertising using their packaging could be an important component of comprehensive tobacco control: A commentary on Australia's plain packaging of cigarettes.
West R.
Drug Alcohol Rev. 2011 Sep 23.

Proposes other measures to strengthen the impact of plain packaging.

Type: Masters' Thesis

A survey on the effects of progressive removal of brand imagery elements from cigarette packs on the perception of adult university students.
Al-hamdani, MA.  Dalhousie University.  Masters' Thesis.

Plain packaging can arguably reduce the appeal of cigarette packages and deter people from smoking. In this study, a 1 (brand type) X 4 (levels of plain packages) betweensubject design was utilized. The method used was an internet survey. 220 adult smokers and non-smokers from Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) rated packages in terms of their brand imagery characteristics and answered a single multiple choice question to test their recall of the health warning on their package. According to the results of a MANOVA test and a bivariate logistic regression test of perception attributes, the association between plainer packages and the participants’ ratings for some attributes were significant, and ranged from slightly moderate to moderate strength levels of associations. Health warnings recall and plainer packages were also significantly and moderately associated. These associations provide a compelling argument for the need for plain packaging policies as a deterrent for smoking.

Type: Editorial/opinion

Why the tobacco industry fears plain packaging.
Chapman S.
Med J Aust. 2011 Sep 5;195(5):255.

From the beginning of the 20th century, when machine-manufactured cigarettes were first marketed, the advertising and packaging industries did all they could to portray cigarettes as a means of signalling personal identity to the young as they took up smoking. A callow youth who wouldn’t be seen dead with an Alpine felt assured by the promise of masculinity in pulling out a packet of Marlboros. Those not wanting the social opprobrium that can come with being showy had the iconic ordinariness of Winfield to clutch as their totem. Those wanting to affect retro stylishness have Peter Stuyvesant or Lucky Strike, and wannabes, any number of haute couture brands — designer carcinogens. But from next year, all cigarette packages will look the same, distinguished only by the brand name in standard typeface.

Type: Editorial/opinion

Welcome to cardboard country: how plain packaging could change the subjective experience of smoking.
Wakefield M.
Tob Control. 2011 Sep;20(5):321-2.

In the case of a deadly product such as tobacco, there is no place for powerful branding imagery on packs if it serves to promote greater subjective enjoyment of smoking, leading consumers to extend their smoking careers. Tobacco companies likely fear privately that plain packaging will reverse-engineer their clever branding tricks: the halo effects of boring standard brown packs could lead smokers closer to subjectively tasting their cigarettes as more like the toxic smoke delivery devices they really are.

Type: Editorial/opinion

Cigarettes and plain packaging: the battle lines are drawn.
The Lancet Oncology.
Lancet Oncol. 2011 Aug;12(8):709.

[A]t a TRIPS council meeting on June 7, 2011, the Dominican Republic, with support or sympathy from Honduras, Nicaragua, Ukraine, the Phillipines, Zambia, Mexico, Cuba, and Ecuador, said it had “serious and grave concerns” about the Australian draft law in that it violated trademark law and would drive down the costs of cigarettes thereby increasing consumption and paving the way for counterfeiting. By contrast, New Zealand, Uruguay, and Norway all supported the proposed law, and India said that studies have shown that plain packaging is an eff ective antismoking strategy.

Type: Analysis of international law

Time to Quit? Assessing International Investment Claims Against Plain Tobacco Packaging in Australia

Tania S. Voon, Melbourne Law School and Andrew D. Mitchell
Melbourne Law School; Georgetown University Law Center

Plain Packaging of Cigarettes and Constitutional Property Rights
Simon Evans and Jason Bosland.  University of Melbourne.

Implications of WTO Law for Plain Packaging of Tobacco Products Tania S. Voon and Andrew D. Mitchell

Boxed in? Australia's Plain Tobacco Packaging Initiative and International Investment Law Arbitration International, Vol. 27, 2011, U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 559 Andrew D. Mitchell and Sebastian M. Wurzberger

Time to Quit? Assessing International Investment Claims Against Plain Tobacco Packaging in Australia Journal of International Economic Law, Vol. 14, No. 3, 2011, U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 560 Tania S. Voon and Andrew D. Mitchell

Do You Mind My Smoking? Plain Packaging of Cigarettes Under the TRIPS Agreement
Alberto Alemanno and Enrico Bonadio
John Marshall Review of Intellectual Property Law, Vol. 10, No. 3, 2011

Type: Media analysis

Tobacco plain packaging legislation: a content analysis of commentary posted on Australian online news.
Freeman B.
Tob Control. 2011 Sep;20(5):361-6. Epub 2011 Apr 27.

The most prevailing argument in opposition to plain packaging was that it would not ‘work’. Three months following the policy announcement, this same ‘won’t work’ frame dominated the Alliance of Australian Retailers Federal election mass media advertising campaign aimed at stopping the plain packaging legislation.47 The Alliance campaign was fully funded by the tobacco industry, receiving $1 million from Imperial Tobacco Australia, $2.2 million from British American Tobacco Australia and $2.1 million from Philip Morris Limited.48 The key message of the campaign advertisements, featuring a series of testimonies from concerned retailers, was that plain packaging ‘won’t work, so why do it’.ii

Type: Research paper 

Estimating the impact of pictorial health warnings and "plain" cigarette packaging: Evidence from experimental auctions among adult smokers in the United States.

Thrasher JF, Rousu MC, Hammond D, Navarro A, Corrigan JR.

Health Policy. 2011 Sep;102(1):41-8. Epub 2011 Jul 16.

Many health policy researchers and tobacco control advocates are calling for “plain” packages, which would eliminate color and brand imagery [23,24] because this imagery can support false beliefs about the reduced risks of some brand varieties and it can increase the salience and believability of pictorial warning labels [25]. Our results are consistent with this research, indicating that plain packaging further reduces demand for cigarettes above and beyond the impact of pictorial health warnings. As we hypothesized, the lowest demand was for cigarette packs that had no brand imagery aside from the brand name font and descriptor, whose bids were 17% lower than the bids for the package with the current US warning label. The importance of tobacco packaging as a marketing vehicle only grows as countries ban marketing through other channels. Standardized, plain packaging without colors, numerical descriptors or brand imagery reduces false beliefs about relative product risk [26], increases the noticeability, recall and believability of health warnings [29,30] and reduces brand appeal among both adults [31] and youth [32–34].

Type: Research paper 

Young adult smokers' perceptions of plain packaging: a pilot naturalistic study

Crawford Moodie, Anne Marie Mackintosh, Gerard Hastings, Allison Ford
Tob Control. 2011 Jul 12. [Epub ahead of print]

First, warnings on dark brown ‘plain’ packs were rated as more salient than warnings on branded packs, at least at the first and second measures, and for a third of those in the post-study interview. Some smokers pointed out that the increased salience increased thoughts about the harms of tobacco. Second, plain packs had less promotional appeal, being perceived negatively throughout the study. The pack colour, distinct from all other brands on the UK market, was viewed as unattractive by smokers and others. The use of a faecal brown pack colour appeared to both destroy the symbolism of tobacco branding and heighten the awareness of associated health risks. For instance, one smoker commented that ‘Even the colour of the pack just made me think, oh God, are my lungs this colour as well?’ These negative perceptions often resulted in embarrassment, shame or guilt.

Type: Research paper 

Young Adults' Interpretations of Tobacco Brands: Implications for Tobacco Control.

Gendall P, Hoek J, Thomson G, Edwards R, Pene G, Gifford H, Pirikahu G, McCool J.
Nicotine Tob Res. 2011 Jun 7.

Like all other products, tobacco brands use sophisticated imagery to develop differentiated appeals that resonate with distinct population groups, including adolescent and young adults. The existence of brands that appeal specifically to younger women and, according to our participants, younger teens highlights the role packaging plays in supporting smoking initiation, promoting addiction, and reinforcing identities to which different groups aspire. Although this work requires replication and extension, our results support calls to introduce plain packaging of tobacco, which would remove brand imagery and thus eliminate the role of tobacco packaging in promoting and maintaining smoking.

Type: Research paper 

Cigarette pack labelling in 12 countries at different levels of economic development

Hassan Mir, Daniel Buchanan, Anna Gilmore Martin McKee, Salim Yusuf, and Clara K. Chow

J Public Health Policy. 2011 May;32(2):146-64. Epub 2011 Mar 3.

With increasing restrictions on cigarette marketing, the cigarette pack itself has become a main means of marketing. We describe a method to examine cigarette labelling and use it to evaluate packs collected from 12 countries at different stages of economic development. Health warnings were present on all 115 packs of cigarettes examined, but were on the front and back panels of only 68 per cent. Promotional labels were widespread, found on packs from all countries and more numerous (although not necessarily larger) than health warning labels in 10 of the 12 countries. Deceptive terms such as 'light' and 'mild' were observed on 42 per cent of all packs examined. The simple method described here can be used to compare cigarette labelling and potentially evaluate and track the implementation of cigarette labelling policy. We found health warning legislation poorly enforced and cigarette packs widely used to promote smoking and deceive smokers about health risks. The findings underline the need for generic (plain) packaging.

..."[Plain packaging] is likely to be easier to implement and enforce than more complex legislation labelling restrictions."

Type: Research paper 

Young adult smokers’ perceptions of illicit tobacco and the possible impact of plain packaging on purchase behaviour

Moodie C, Hastings G, Joossens L.

Eur J Public Health. 2011 Mar 26. [Epub ahead of print]

Plain (unbranded) packaging for cigarettes is at the top of the tobacco control agenda in both Australia and Europe. The evidence suggests that it will benefit public health by decreasing the appeal of tobacco products and increasing the power of the health warning. The tobacco industry instead argues that plain packaging would make it easier to counterfeit cigarettes, which would both confuse consumers and reduce price; thereby increasing consumption. Using focus group research we examined young adult smokers (N = 54) perceptions of, and ability to recognize, illicit tobacco and the possible impact of plain packaging on illicit tobacco purchasing behaviour. We found that the pack has no impact on the decision to buy illicit tobacco. Smokers were easily able to identify counterfeit cigarettes, not least by the pack, and buy it knowingly and in the full expectation that it will be inferior in quality. Illicit tobacco purchase, including that for counterfeit tobacco, was instead driven by availability and price. Given the extremely low manufacturing cost, per pack, of certain types of illicit cigarettes, it is difficult to envisage how plain packaging would alter the price of illicit tobacco in any meaningful way. The findings therefore suggest that a move to plain packaging would have no impact on young adult smokers' purchase behaviour.

Type: Research paper 

The Impact of Cigarette Pack Design, Descriptors, and Warning Labels on Risk Perception in the U.S.

Maansi Bansal-Travers; David Hammond; Philip Smith; K. Michael Cummings
American Journal of Preventive Medicine (June 2011), 40 (6), pg. 674-682

Participants selected larger, pictorial, and loss-framed warning labels as more likely to attract attention, encourage thoughts about health risks, motivate quitting, and be most effective. Participants were more likely to select packs with lighter color shading and descriptors such as light, silver, and smooth as delivering less tar, smoother taste, and lower health risk, compared to darker-shaded or full-flavor packs. Additionally, participants were more likely to select the branded compared to plain white pack when asked which delivered the most tar, smoothest taste, was more attractive, appealed to youth aged <18 years, and contained cigarettes of better quality.

Type: Research paper 

Deadly in pink: the impact of cigarette packaging among young women
Juliana Doxey, David Hammond
Tobacco Control,

Fully-branded female packs were rated as
significantly more appealing than ‘no descriptor’ packs,
‘plain’ packs and non-female branded packs.
Female branded packs were associated with a greater
number of positive attributes including glamour, slimness
and attractiveness, compared to brands without
descriptors and ‘plain’ packs. Women who viewed plain
packs were less likely to believe that smoking helps
people control their appetite, an important predictor of
smoking among young women, compared to women
who viewed branded female packs.
 ‘Plain’ packaging - removing colours and
design elements -  and removing descriptors such as
‘slims’ from packs may reduce brand appeal and thereby
susceptibility to smoking among young women.

Type: Research paper 

Impact of Female-Oriented Cigarette Packaging in the United States
David Hammond, Juliana Doxey, amantha Daniel, Maansi Bansal-Travers

Nicotine Tob Res. 2011 Jul;13(7):579-88. Epub 2011 Apr 12.

Fully branded female packs were rated significantly more appealing than the same packs without descriptors, “plain” packs, and non–female-branded packs. Female-branded packs were associated with a greater number of positive attributesincluding glamour, slimness, and attractiveness and were more likely to be perceived as less harmful. Approximately 40% of smokers and nonsmokers requested a pack at the end of the study; female-branded packs were 3 times more likely to be selected than plain packs.
Plain packaging and removing descriptors such as “slims” from cigarette packs may reduce smoking susceptibility among young women.

Type: Consultation paper

Government of Australia consultation paper and draft legislation on plain and standardized packaging.

Type: Meeting reports.

Meetings on the study "Assessing the Impacts of Revising the Tobacco Products Directive" (which included proposals on plain packaging) prepared by RAND Europe, Brussels, 19-20 October 2010.

Summary records:

Pharmaceutical Industry
Tobacco industry
Regulatory Committee

Type: Research Paper 2011

“Plain packaging Increases Visual Attention to Health Warnings on Cigarette Packs in Non-Smokers and Weekly Smokers but not Daily Smokers"

Munafo, MR, Roberts, N, Bault, L, Leonard, U.
Addiction. 2011 Aug;106(8):1505-10.2010

Type: Impact analysis

Assessing the Impacts of Revising the Tobacco Products Directive Study to support a DG SANCO Impact Assessment Final report
Rand Europe.
Commissioned by the European Union



Type: Analysis of international law

Australia's Move to the Plain Packaging of Cigarettes and its WTO Compatibility
Andrew D. Mitchell
Asian Journal of WTO and International Health Law and Policy, Vol. 5, No. 2, 2010

Type: Analysis of international law

The Case of Plain Packaging for Cigarettes - an Overview
Alberto Alemanno and Enrico Bonadio
European Journal of Risk Regulation, p. 268, March 2010

Type: Research Paper 2010

“Plain packaging” regulations for tobacco products: the impact of standardizing the color and design of cigarette packs
Hammond, D.
Mercadotecnia Social, vol. 52, suplemento 2 de 2010

The evidence base in support of “plain” and standardized packaging is growing rapidly and consistently points to the potential benefit of plain packaging in terms of increasing the effectiveness of health warnings, reducing false health beliefs about cigarettes, and reducing brand appeal among youth and young adults. A vast body of evidence on the impact of packaging is also contained in internal tobacco industry documents.

Type: Research Paper 2010
Forecasting future tobacco control policy: where to next?
Freeman B, Gartner C, Hall W, Chapman S.
Aust N Z J Public Health. 2010 Oct;34(5):447-50.

OBJECTIVE: Effective tobacco control policies include price increases through taxes, restrictions on smoking in public and work places, adequately funded mass media campaigns, bans on advertising, health warnings on packages and cessation assistance. As these policies have been largely implemented in Australia, what next should the country do in tobacco control?
METHODS: Ninety-one Australian tobacco control stakeholders took part in a web-based survey about the future of tobacco control policies.
RESULTS: The policy deemed most important in decreasing smoking was to increase excise and customs duty by 30%. Other policies receiving high support included: funding mass media campaigns through tax hypothecation; introducing retail display bans; plain packaging of tobacco products; and banning smoking in outdoor dining areas. Reintroducing the sale of smokeless tobacco products received the least support.
CONCLUSION: Countries that have largely implemented the provisions of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control must maintain commitments to proven tobacco control measures, but also provide global leadership through the adoption of innovative policies.
IMPLICATIONS: The release of the Australian 2009 National Preventative Health Taskforce's report presents an opportunity to translate these ideas into action.

Type: Research Paper 2010
Effects of dissuasive packaging on young adult smokers.
Hoek J, Wong C, Gendall P, Louviere J, Cong K.
Tobacco Control. 2010. October 21.

Results Of the 13 options tested, respondents were significantly less likely to choose those featuring fewer branding elements or larger health warnings. Options that featured more branding elements were still preferred even when they also featured a 50% health warning, but were significantly less likely to be chosen when they featured a 75% warning. Comparison of a control pack representing the status quo (branded with 30% front of pack warning) and a plain pack (with a 75% warning) revealed the latter would be significantly more likely to elicit cessation-related behaviours. Conclusions Plain packs that feature large graphic health warnings are significantly more likely to promote cessation among young adult smokers than fully or partially branded packs. The findings support the introduction of plain packaging and suggest use of unbranded package space to feature larger health warnings would further promote cessation.

Type: Research Paper 2010
Adolescents' perceptions of cigarette brand image: does plain packaging make a difference?
Germain D, Wakefield MA, Durkin SJ.
J Adolesc Health. 2010 Apr;46(4):385-92. Epub 2009 Oct 14.

When brand elements such as color, branded fonts, and imagery were progressively removed from cigarette packs, adolescents perceived packs to be less appealing, rated attributes of a typical smoker of the pack less positively, and had more negative expectations of cigarette taste. Pack appeal was reduced even further when the size of the pictorial health warning on the most plain pack was increased from 30% to 80% of the pack face, with this effect apparent among susceptible nonsmokers, experimenters, and established smokers.


Type: Commissioned research

A brief review of plain packaging research for tobacco products
Report prepared for Department of Health

Crawford Moodie, Gerard Hastings, Allison Ford  

Type: Research Paper 2009
Plain packaging: a time for action?
Crawford Moodie and Gerard Hastings  
Eur J Public Health.2009; 0:

Type: Research Paper 2009
Cigarette pack design and perceptions of risk among UK adults and youth
David Hammond, Martin Dockrell, Deborah Arnott, Alex Lee, Ann McNeill
European Journal of Public Health, Vol. 19, No. 6, 631–637

Type: Research Paper 2009
Survey of descriptors on cigarette packs: still misleading consumers?
Peace J, Wilson N, Hoek J, Edwards R, Thomson G.
N Z Med J. 2009 Sep 25;122(1303):90-6.

Type: Policy analysis/recommendation
Evaluation of the Effectiveness of the Graphic Health Warnings on Tobacco Product Packaging 2008 (Australian Government. Department of Health and Aging)
Length: 242 pages
Related web-site:

effectivenessConsumers maintained that package design and colour can be an enticement to purchase a brand. Design elements were thought to often be in conflict and competition with the health message for consumer attention. To this end, plain packaging (i.e. restricting or prohibiting the use of logos, colours, brand imagery or text other than brand names printed in a standard colour and font size) was suggested by both consumers and particularly stakeholders as one way of strengthening the impact of health messages. The suggestion made by many of those who took part in the 2008 Evaluation that the potential effect of plain packaging is in strengthening the impact of the health warnings has also emerged in other research 

Type: Research (Consumer behaviour):
Nick Wilson et al.
Misperceptions of "light" cigarettes abound: National survey data
BMC Public Health 2009, 9:126

Most "lights" smokers have one or more misperceptions about the product they use, and were no more likely to intend to quit or to have made a quit attempt. In response to such misperceptions, governments could act further to eliminate all misleading tobacco marketing. Ideally, they could not only adopt FCTC requirements, but go further by requiring plain packaging for all tobacco products.

australia-2009Type: Policy analysis/recommendation
Australian Government's Preventative Health Taskforce
The Healthiest Country by 2020 - National Preventative Health Strategy - the roadmap for action.

Chapter 3: Tobacco: Towards world’s best practice in tobacco control (PDF 554 KB) Length: 66 pages
Related web-site:

In Australia and other countries that have already banned traditional forms of tobacco marketing, packaging has become a cornerstone of marketing strategy. Brand names and package design enable the communication of personal characteristics, social identity and aspirations,[90] and are a crucial aspect of marketing tobacco products.[91, 92] Market-testing studies show that package design – through the use of varying colour and other design elements – induces smokers to expect, and then actually experience, their cigarettes to be lower strength, lower in tar and lower in health risk than exactly the same cigarettes presented without this packaging.[93, 94] These misperceptions are part of the constellation of modifiable tobacco marketing factors that make smoking easier to take up and harder to quit.

As noted above, there can be no justification for allowing any form of promotion for this uniquely dangerous and addictive product which it is illegal to sell to children. ‘Plain packaging’ entails prohibiting brand imagery, colours, corporate logos and trademarks, and permitting manufacturers only to print the brand name in a mandated size, font and place, in addition to required health warnings and other legally mandated product information such as toxic constituents, tax-paid seals or package contents. A standard cardboard texture would be mandatory, and the size and shape of the package and cellophane wrapper would also be prescribed.

Type: Research paper (consumer behaviour)
David Hammond et al.
Cigarette pack design and perceptions of risk among UK adults and youth.
European Journal of Public Health. United Kingdom

The colour of packs was also associated with perceptions of risk and brand appeal: compared with Marlboro packs with a red logo, Marlboro packs with a gold logo were rated as lower health risk by 53% and easier to quit by 31% of adult smokers. Plain packs significantly reduced false beliefs about health risk and ease of quitting, and were rated as significantly less attractive and appealing to youth for trying smoking. CONCLUSIONS: Current regulations have failed to remove potentially misleading information from tobacco packaging. Removing colours from packs (plain packaging), as well as terms such as 'smooth' 'gold' and 'silver' would significantly reduce false beliefs and increase compliance with existing legislation.

Type: Research Paper (Consumer behaviour)
Janet Hoek
Tobacco Branding and Plain Packaging: The New Frontier in Tobacco Control?
Related web-site:

Respondent conditioning theory suggests removal of brand imagery would deter smoking initiation and promote cessation by extinguishing the “badge” status of tobacco products and eliminating an important communication channel relied upon by tobacco marketers. Our findings support these hypotheses; the PWL decreased the attractiveness of tobacco packages, particularly among smokers, and generic packages were markedly less attractive than branded packages, particularly when they featured a PWL. The results suggest PWLs disrupt brand imagery; each option was less attractive when paired with a PWL than with a text warning, and attractiveness declined in line with brand familiarity.

....our results suggest generic packaging would increase the salience and impact of PWLs, and reduce the influence of brand imagery. While preliminary, these findings are nevertheless the first to estimate the interaction between brand imagery and PWLs. They quantify the importance of tobacco branding, support the introduction of pictorial warning labels, and illustrate how plain packaging could extend the frontier of tobacco control.

Type: Legislative Proposal 2009
Plain Tobacco Packaging (Removing Branding from Cigarette Packs) Bill 2009. Introduced August 20, 2009.  Australian Senate
Length: 10 pages
Also: Second reading debate
Related web-site:

Type: Legislative Proposal 2009
Health Bill [HL] Tobacco Control Provisions Bill 97 of 2008-09
United Kingdom Parliament. House of Commons Library.
Legislative Review.
Length: 64 pages

There is no clause in the Bill to impose plain packaging of tobacco products. However, during both Grand Committee and report stage Lord Patel moved amendments to enable the Secretary of State through regulations to impose plain-packaging requirements on all tobacco products. On both occasions the amendments were withdrawn but not before they had provoked a great deal of debate. (summary of debate follows)

Type: Conference presentations on plain packaging 2009
World Conference on Tobacco or Health, Mumbai, 2009:

Type: Conference presentations on packaging 2009
World Conference on Tobacco or Health, Mumbai, 2009:

iuatldType: Summary Document 2009
International Union for Tuberculosis and Lung Disease.
Tobacco Packaging and Labelling Technical guide. International
Length: 56 pages
Related web-site:

"The Technical Guide on Tobacco Labelling and Packaging is intended to assist governments in implementing effective packaging and labelling measures that are required and recommended by the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), and included in the World Health Organization (WHO) Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic, 2008 – the MPOWER package. It is targeted primarily at policy makers responsible for developing policy proposals and at government officials charged with implementing the development process for packaging and labelling measures."

phoneyclaimsType: Research paper (Industry documents) 2009
Physicians for a Smoke-Free Canada
Packaging phoney intellectual property claims. How multinational tobacco companies colluded to use trade and intellectual property arguments they knew were phoney to oppose plain packaging and larger health warnings.
Length: 48 pages
Related Website:

The companies decided to fight plain packaging on trade grounds because it provided them a more solid footing than allowing health issues to enter the debate. For this reason, they focused their energies on the Intellectual Property agreements governed by WIPO and the investment protection contained in NAFTA agreements (neither of which, unlike the World Trade Agreements, allow for exemptions on health grounds). Despite being told repeatedly by WIPO that their analysis was flawed, the companies persisted in telling the government and the public that plain packaging would be inconsistent with international intellectual property protections.

Following the industry’s misrepresentation of international trade law, new health ministers in Canada and Australia forsook plain packaging as a tobacco control measure they mistakenly believed to be contrary to their countries’ obligations under international trade agreements.

hammondType: Summary Document 2009
David Hammond (funded by International Union for Tuberculosis and Lung Disease).
Tobacco Labelling and Packaging Toolkit. A guide to FCTC Article 11.
Length: 132 pages
Related Website:

This Toolkit was created to serve as a resource to support implementation of Article 11. It includes a review of evidence, as well as recommendations for designing health warnings on packages. Overall, the Toolkit is intended to simplify the process of developing effective labelling policies and to provide concrete resources for regulators, researchers, and tobacco control advocates.

Type: Research Paper 2009
David Hammond et al.
The impact of cigarette package design on perceptions of risk. Journal of Public Health.

Respondents were significantly more likely to rate packages with the terms ‘light’, ‘mild’, ‘smooth’ and ‘silver’ as having a smoother taste, delivering less tar and lower health risk compared with ‘regular’ and ‘full flavor’ brands. Respondents also rated packages with lighter colors and a picture of a filter as significantly more likely to taste smooth, deliver less tar and lower risk....In addition to broadening the list of prohibited words on packs, the removal of color and other design elements— so-called ‘plain packaging’—may also be required to eliminate misleading information from packaging.


ukproposalType: Policy Proposal and consultation 2008
United Kingdom Department of Health. Consultation on the future of tobacco control

The Department of Health seeks views from stakeholders and members of the public on the potential for plain packaging of tobacco products and for a larger minimum cigarette pack size as initiatives to reduce uptake of smoking, particularly among children and young people. More general feedback is sought in these areas, as specific proposals are not being considered at present.
Question 10: Do you believe that plain packaging of tobacco products has merit as an initiative to reduce smoking uptake by young people?

Responses: 82,818 Almost 98 per cent of respondents who answered this question (80,543 respondents) were in favour of plain packaging.

Approximately 2,000 respondents were against the measure, with most of these suggesting that such a requirement would stimulate counterfeit and illicit trade

Submissions to the consultation from health community can be found on web-site of ASH UK

Industry submissions

Type: Treaty agreement FCTC Conference of Parties. 2008
Guidelines for implementation of Article 11 (labelling) and Article 13 (advertising, promotion and sponsorship). International
Length: 70 pages
Related websites:

Parties should consider adopting measures to restrict or prohibit the use of logos, colours, brand images or promotional information on packaging other than brand names and product names displayed in a standard colour and font style (plain packaging). This may increase the noticeability and effectiveness of health warnings and messages, prevent the package from detracting attention from them, and address industry package design techniques that may suggest that some products are less harmful than others.

australiaType: Policy analysis and recommendation 2008
Australian Preventive Health Taskforce:
Tobacco Control in Australia. Making Smoking History.
Length: 79 Pages
Related web-site:

Finally, we propose something that has not yet been tried anywhere in the world, but which would cost the taxpayer nothing and offers the prospect of shattering the image of cigarettes as an ordinary consumer item. If we act quickly, Australia can overtake the British Government and become the first country in the world to mandate that cigarettes be sold in plain packaging. There is good evidence that this would have a profound effect on young image conscious teenagers.


ashType: Research Paper/Policy analysis (2008)
Beyond smoking kills. Protecting Children. Reducing Inequalities
Length: 78 pages
Related web-site:

These findings are compelling: the branding of cigarette packs profoundly affects consumer perceptions of the attractiveness and relative safety of the products. Remove this branding and the result is immediate: young people find cigarettes less attractive and smokers are less likely to be misled about the safety of the cigarettes they smoke.

Type: Research Paper/Policy analysis (2008)
George Thomson et al.
A call to reduce harm from tobacco pack marketing and bolster consumer health protection in New Zealand.
New Zealand Medical Journal.
Length: 4 pages
Related web-site: gthomson.html

Type: Research Paper/Summary document 2008
Gerard Hastings et al.
The plain truth about plain packaging.
Tobacco Control.
Length: 3 Pages
Related web-site:

Type: Summary  2008
Framework Convention Alliance Fact Sheet.
Plain packaging of tobacco products.
United States
Length: 3 pages
Related web-site:

otruType: Summary presentations 2008
Papers presented at the Ontario Tobacco Research Unit Conference "Tobacco Control in the 21st century." Canada.

Report on session: The Plain Facts. Why Canada should move quickly to implement plain packaging of tobacco products. Policy synthesis.

Type: Research paper (consumer behaviour) 2008
M A Wakefield, D Germain, S J Durkin
How does increasingly plainer cigarette packaging influence adult smokers’ perceptions about brand image? An experimental study. Tobacco Control. Australia.
Length: 6 pages
Related web-site:

Compared with current cigarette packs with full branding, cigarette packs that displayed progressively fewer branding design elements were perceived increasingly unfavourably in terms of smokers’ appraisals of the packs, the smokers who might smoke such packs, and the inferred experience of smoking a cigarette from these packs.

Type: Research Paper (Summary)  2008
Freeman B, Chapman S, Rimmer M. The case for the plain packaging of tobacco products. Australia.

Type: Research Paper (Consumer Behaviour)  2008
Les Études de Marché Créatec/Health Canada.
Quantitative study of Canadian adult smokers effects of modified packaging through increasing the size of warnings on cigarette packages. Canada. Canada
Length: 144 pages
related web-site:

Results of this experiment showed that any of the three increased size options for warnings on cigarettes packages would make HWMs a more effective vehicle for communicating with adult smokers than the current size: larger and more visible warnings are more likely to effectively support efforts against smoking. 

However, to achieve significant and substantial generalized effects on most indicators, HWMs had to cover at least 90% of the front panel (option C).

Type: Research Paper (Consumer Behaviour)  2008
Les Études de Marché Créatec/Health Canada.
Quantitative study of Canadian youth smokers and vulnerable non-smokers effects of modified packaging through increasing the size of warnings on cigarette packages Canada
Length: 145 pages

To achieve substantial effects on most effectiveness indicators, at least option C (90%) was required. With modified packaging option C (90%) three additional substantial effects were observed. Compared to the current scenario, [Health Warning Messages] with option C [that were 90% of the package face] were perceived as substantially more efficient in: − Convincing various styles of smokers to stay away from smoking;
− Connecting with their emotions and shocking them;
− Making cigarette packages less attractive.

 With modified packaging [that covers the entire package surface] option D (100%) two additional substantial effects were observed. Compared to the current scenario, HWMs with option D affected substantially several (but not all) attributes of:
− Smoker image;
− Product image.

Type: Research Paper (Consumer Behaviour)  2008
Health Canada/Environics
Consumer research on the size of health warning messages quantitative study of Canadian adult smokers : final report . Samples of packages: Players , Peter Jackson
Length: 147 pages
Related web-site:

When branded packs are tested against plain packs, controlling for the size of the health warning message, smokers think the plain pack is more effective than the branded pack in informing about the health effects of tobacco (48% say plain pack, 20% say branded pack in the 50% comparison; and 50% say plain pack, 19% say branded pack in the 75% comparison). Similarly, smokers think the plain pack is more effective than the branded pack in encouraging Canadians to reduce their tobacco use (48% say plain pack, 17% say branded pack in the 50% comparison; and 49% say plain pack, 18% say branded pack in the 75% comparison).

Type: Research Paper (Consumer Behaviour) 2008
Health Canada/Environics.
Consumer research on the size of health warning messages : quantitative study of Canadian youth, final report  Samples of packages. Export A and Number 7
Length: 160 pages
Related web-site:

When branded packs are tested against plain packs, controlling for the size of the health warning message, youth think the plain pack is more effective than the branded pack in informing Canadians about the health effects of tobacco.


Type: Research summary 2007
David Hammond.
Tobacco Packaging and labelling. Review of Evidence. Canada/International
Length: 44 pages
Related web-site:

The Package as a Marketing Tool
 • Packages are the most direct and critical link to consumers.
• Tobacco packages serve as a “portable” advertisement and a “badge” product.
• Packages play a critical role in point-of-sale marketing.
• Packages are used to promote “below-the-line” marketing activities, sponsorships, and promotional activities.
• The industry continues to expand the boundaries of package design through innovations in printing technology, package shape, and plastic wrapping.
• The importance of the packages increases as other forms of marketing are restricted. Health Warnings Labels
• Removing misleading information will also require restrictions on colour and brand imagery. • “Plain” packaging is less appealing to youth, increases the effectiveness of health warnings, and is less likely to mislead smokers regarding the risks of their products.

Type: Research Summary 2007
Roberta Ferrence et al. Warning Labels and Packaging. Chapter in Richard Bonnie et al.
Ending the Tobacco Problem: A Blueprint for the Nation. National Academies Press.
Length (of chapter): 14 pages

Plain packaging, devoid of brand logos and images, may be the only way of removing deceptive labeling from packages. Although plain packaging has yet to be mandated in any jurisdiction, it would effectively strip the industry of a critical marketing tool. Two separate studies also indicate that plain packaging would help to increase the salience of health warnings. Goldberg and colleagues (1999) found that plain packaging increased the recall of health warning messages in two of three cases (Goldberg et al. 1999). Short, simple messages appeared to be more effective on plain packages, whereas a longer technical message showed no improvement on a plain package. Beede and Lawson (1992) also found that presenting health warnings on plain packages without brand imagery resulted in a significantly greater recall rate (Beede and Lawson 1992).

freemanType: Research Summary    2007
Becky Freeman and Simon Chapman.
The case for plain packaging of tobacco products. Australia
Length: 22 pages
Related web-site:

Plain packaging of all tobacco products would remove a key remaining means for the industry to promote its products to billions of the world’s smokers and future smokers. Governments have appropriated large surface areas of tobacco packs for health warnings without legal impediment or need to compensate tobacco companies. Requiring plain packaging is consistent with the intention to ban all tobacco promotions. There is no impediment in the FCTC to interpreting tobacco advertising and promotion to include tobacco packs.


Type: Conference Presentation (2006)
Eric LeGresley. WCTOH
The International Legality of Plain Packaging
Length: 54 slides

Type: Research Summary    2006
Janet Hoek
An Evaluation of Regulatory Responses Governing the Use of Tobacco Descriptors. New Zealand
Length: 72 pages
Related web-site: NZ Smokefree Coalitin.

Type: Research Report (Consumer behaviour)
Janet Hoek et al.:
Tobacco Descriptors: An Analysis of Adolescents’ Beliefs and Behaviour. New Zealand
Length: 8 pages

The proportion of adolescents incorrectly associating ‘light’ and ‘mild’ with less harmful attributes confirms the WHO’s call to ban descriptors, but suggests caution is required before replacement terms, such as ‘smooth’ are introduced. It would be ironic if alternative descriptors created similar levels of confusion and further research into these is required to ensure the industry’s proposed response does not circumvent regulators’ intentions.


Type: Research Summary (industry documents) 2002
Melanie Wakefield et al.
The cigarette pack as image: new evidence from tobacco industry documents. Tobacco Control.  Australia.
Length: 8 pages
Related web-site:

Documents show that, especially in the context of tighter restrictions on conventional avenues for tobacco marketing, tobacco companies view cigarette packaging as an integral component of marketing strategy and a vehicle for (a) creating significant in-store presence at the point of purchase, and (b) communicating brand image. Market testing results indicate that such imagery is so strong as to influence smoker’s taste ratings of the same cigarettes when packaged differently. Documents also reveal the careful balancing act that companies have employed in using pack design and colour to communicate the impression of lower tar or milder cigarettes, while preserving perceived taste and “satisfaction”. Systematic and extensive research is carried out by tobacco companies to ensure that cigarette packaging appeals to selected target groups, including young adults and women.

Type: Research Summary (industry documents) 2002
Di-Franza, JR, Clark DM, POllay RW
Cigarette package design: opportunities for disease prevention
Tobacco Induced Diseases Vol. 1, No. 2: 97–109 (2002)

Cigarette manufacturers devote a great deal of attention and expense to package design because it is central to their efforts to create brand images. Colors, graphic elements, proportioning, texture, materials and typography are tested and used in various combinations to create the desired product and user images. Designs help to create the perceived product attributes and project a personality image of the user with the intent of fulfilling the psychological needs of the targeted type of smoker. The communication of these images and attributes is conducted through conscious and subliminal processes. Extensive testing is conducted using a variety of qualitative and quantitative research techniques. Conclusion: The promotion of tobacco products through appealing imagery cannot be stopped without regulating the package design. The same marketing research techniques used by the tobacco companies can be used to design generic packaging and more effective warning labels targeted at specific consumers.



Type: Research Letter 1999
Marvin Goldberg et al.
The effect of plain packaging on response to health warnings. AJPH. Canada.
Length: 1 page

Warnings on plain white packages may be more effective at getting attention and enhancing recall than warnings on regular packages.


Type: Research Summary 1995
Robert Cunningham.
The case for plain packaging. Tobacco Control. Canada.
Length: 8 pages
Related web-site:

Plain packaging of cigarettes, also known as generic packaging is a new tobacco control tool that is being considered by governments in Canada.

Type: Research Report (Consumer behaviour)  1995
Irving Rootman et al.
A Study on Youth Smoking. Plain packaging, health warnings, event sponsorship and price reductions. Canada
Length: 12 pages
Related web-site:

Type: Research Report (Consumer behaviour)  1995
Health Canada.
"When Packages can't speak." Canada.
Length: 427 pages

Plain and generic packaging would appear to "work" if the intent is to replace positive brand imagery with negative brand imagery . With plain and generic cigarette packages the conspicuousness of the choice of cigarette brand, and thus the brand's value as a symbol of belonging to a particular reference group, would decrease (Trachtenberg, 1987) . Such packaging is expected to break the perceptual connection between perceived need or want, and the satisfaction of that need or want through cigarette consumption (Opatow, 1984) . It would reduce brand awareness as a cue for first-time purchase choices by inexperienced buyers. Brand recognition would be hampered, as visual cues are diminished at point-of purchase . Plain and generic packaging would be consistent with the ban on tobacco advertising and likely heighten the believability of warning messages (Beltramini, 1988) .

Theoretically, plain and generic packaging should strike at the very process of adolescent decision making related to cigarette adoption. But presently there is little empirical evidence to support this theory . Most of the plain and generic packaging studies examined consumer desire to purchase plain-packaged goods (generics) given a choice between a brand name package and the less expensive, plain packaged alternative (Maxwell, 1984 ; McEnally and Hawes, 1984; Harris and Strang, 1985; Wilkes and Valencia, 1985) . There have been very few studies about the effects of plain and generic packaging on consumer behaviour in which the whole product class was packaged in plain and generic containers .


Type: Summary of research 1994
Tobacco Documentation Centre.  Summary of published and unpublished research on plain packaging

Type: Policy Analysis/Recommendation 1994
Standing Committee on Health.
Towards Zero Consumption. Generic Packaging of Cigarettes. Canada
Length: 60 pages

The Committee, therefore, recommends :
1. That the federal government establish the legislative framework required to proceed with plain or generic packaging of tobacco products;
2. That the legislation be introduced when Health Canada concludes its current study on the effects of plain packaging on tobacco consumption, if the results of that study support the available evidence that such packaging will reduce consumption ;
3. That the federal government require that plain or generic packages be produced in a manner that minimizes the possibility of contraband products, and that the design incorporate printing and packaging technologies that will make duplication as difficult as possible .

Type: Legal opinion in support of plain packaging (1994)
J. Michael Robinson: Proposed Canadian Legislation Requiring "Plain Packaging."
J-G Castel. "Would plain packaging for cigarettes violate Canada's International Trade Obligations?"
Me Caron:
Consultation sur la licéité des paquets dits « génériques » au regard du droit de la propriété intellectuelle


Type: Policy Proposal 1993
New Zealand Public Health Commission. “Smokefree New Zealand 2000”
Source: Legacy Documents.

Type: Research Summary 1993
Canadian Cancer Society.
Effects of plain packaging on the image of tobacco products among youth. Canada
Length: 43 pages

In conclusion, the results of this study provide strong support for public policy to legislate plain packaging, as part of a comprehensive plan to reduce tobacco use . By excluding plain packaging from such a plan, an important opportunity would be missed to effectively break a critical and powerful link that transfers the images portrayed via other promotional strategies, to the user of cigarettes .


Type: Research Summary/Policy Analysis 1992
Centre for Behavioural Research in Cancer. 
"Health Warnings and contents labelling on tobacco products."  Australia.
Length: 250 pages

Recommendation: G7. Tobacco products should be sold in "standard packages" (See Specific Recommendations Cl to C6).
Rationale: Packaging creates brand images, which are inimical to rational appraisal of the dangers of smoking . This undermines the impact of health warnings and may promote tobacco use, particularly among adolescents in whom the habit may not yet be entrenched.
Evidence: Plain packaging has been found to be unattractive and discourage smoking in adolescents (Beede et al 1991; Paper 11) .


Type: Research Report (Consumer behaviour) 1991
Park Beede et al.
Brand image attraction : the promotional impact of cigarette packaging. New Zealand
3 pages


Type: Research Report (Consumer behaviour) 1990
Park Beede et al.
The Promotional impact of cigarette packaging. A study of Adolescent responses to cigarette plain-packs.
New Zealand
Length: 35 pages

A major study was conducted to investigate adolescent attitudes toward cigarette packaging, (i .e ., use of a brand name, colour scheme, logos and symbols, etcetera) . A series of focus group interviews were utilised to examine associations which develop between packaging stimuli and respondents' perceptions about both the brand and the product . The packaging stimuli were classified into two distinct categories ; one set of stimuli represented normal market packages while the second set represented "generic" or " plain-pack" packaging . The plain-packs were produced in typical generic form and were consistent across all brands, excluding the actual brand name. It was proposed that the plain-pack cigarette packages would elicit a lesser proportion of recalled impressions and information due to a substantial lack of cues available to the respondent . This would result in greater confusion in the respondent's ability to assign learned associations-to the assorted brands and thus reduce the promotional impact of brand images .

Type: Research Report (Consumer behaviour) 1990
Carr-Gregg MR, Gray AJ."Generic" packaging--a possible solution to the marketing of tobacco to young people. New Zealand.


Type: Policy Analysis/Recommendation
Murray Laugesen.
"Tobacco Promotion through product packaging." New Zealand.
Length: 10 pages
All tobacco product packs should be plain . This means that the pack is white, the print is black, and no other colours are permitted . The brandname would be printed in standard font and size on the front main face and the bottom of the pack . Tar and nicotine levels and bar code would remain as at present, while logo, logotype, and all use of colour including on the packet material itself would not be seen on tobacco product packets or cartons .