Cancer Research UK’s (CRUK) own findings say that kids do not take a blind bit of notice of cigarette packets, hat tip Dick Puddlecote

This is shamelessly cut and pasted from Dick Puddlecote the blogger.  Cancer Research UK’s own study found no correlation with packet design and a teenager’s attention. Really such blatant misleading of the public and by a charity is unforgivable.

“Cancer Research UK have today thrown their highly-paid hat into the plain packaging ring with a report which has seemingly only been picked up by the Mirror and the Independent. From the latter we learn.

Eight focus groups of 15-years-olds assembled by the charity showed clear differences between boys and girls when asked to pick their favourite pack. Girls chose Silk Cut and Vogue Superslims which they related to perfume, make-up and chocolate. Boys preferred Marlbro Bright Leaf, Lambert and Butler and B&H slide packs which suggested maturity, popularity and confidence.

From this, The Indy has concluded – probably encouraged by alarmist wording in the press release they would have been sent – that …

Tobacco companies are designing cigarette packs to resemble bottles of perfume or with lids that flip open like a lighter to lure young people into smoking.

Research published yesterday reveals the lengths to which the industry has gone to make its packs attractive to new generations of smokers as opportunities for promoting its products have been progressively reduced.

In which case, they must have done an apallingly inept job as Cancer Research UK’s study shows quite convincingly.

On page 30, a description began of how the 15 year olds in the focus groups viewed tobacco packaging. Or didn’t, to be more accurate.

Generally, there was little awareness of different styles of tobacco packaging apart from the key brand, which for the participants in this study, was Mayfair. Most participants could describe Mayfair’s blue pack design and this was viewed as a standard tobacco pack. It was seen as a popular, every-day pack, commonly smoked by family members and peers. It was also a pack to be seen with for ‘fitting-in’ purposes. Participants did not view this pack as particularly attractive or as a good design, but it was sometimes described as cool and good quality because of its popularity.

Quite different from the hyperbole being pumped out to newspapers by CRUK, isn’t it? The narrative continued.

Aside from Mayfair, there was little prior awareness of the packs used in the focus groups. A small number of participants had seen the innovative B&H slide and Marlboro Bright Leaf packs before. On occasion, some participants could recall seeing the Lambert & Butler, Pall Mall and Silk Cut packs and the Golden Virginia pouch. However, it appeared that participants were seeing most of the packs used in the focus groups for the first time. This was despite a general perception that tobacco packs were everywhere and seen countless times a day in shops, vending machines, public smoking areas and on the ground.

So much for the theory that ‘glitzy’ and innovative cigarette packs are fairly jumping off the shelves and into kids’ faces. Most young people seem completely unaware of their existence.

Again and again, the same view is expressed about the meaningless nature of tobacco packs to kids.

To some extent the pack appeared peripheral compared with the cigarette in youth smoking, particularly at the initiation/experimentation stage. The general perception was that young people would either ‘jump in’, i.e. pool their money among a group of friends to buy a pack, or buy single cigarettes from someone in school known to have a pack. […] Some said they never really saw the pack being used it was just the cigarette that was passed around.

It was the same with packs containing fewer cigarettes, which the righteous continually point to as designed for the youth market. If so, they’re not designed very well.

The two 14 packs sparked much curiosity and discussion among participants. There was little prior awareness of this pack size. That the packs contained 14 cigarettes was neither viewed positively or negatively suggesting that different size offerings have little meaning for young people.

And when the researchers unveiled the point of the exercise, the holy grail plain brown pack (which they branded as Kerrods).

Placing the ‘Kerrods’ plain pack alongside branded packs for the tobacco packaging activities gave insights into plain pack perceptions and the messages a plain pack communicates relative to branded packs. The groupsgave no indication they suspected the plain pack was anything but a genuine pack, although this may be explained by the low brand and pack awareness of all but the most popular brands.

Yes. So very unaware were the groups of any tobacco packaging at all, they even believed a normal pack spray-painted brown was a genuine brand.

Which is kinda what sane people have been saying all along, that kids are not hypnotised, or coerced, into starting to smoke by tobacco packaging in any way shape or form. This new research simply proves that conclusively. Thank you, CRUK.

Now can we just stop this pointless charade, Lansley? It’s just wasting everyone’s time and making your department look like a bunch of cretinous clowns. ”


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6 Responses to Cancer Research UK’s (CRUK) own findings say that kids do not take a blind bit of notice of cigarette packets, hat tip Dick Puddlecote

  1. junican says:

    Just watched the video, Sheila. So a few children (and I mean children) like some pretty colours more than other pretty colours. None of them mentioned the contents! And what is that supposed to prove?

  2. Frank J says:

    Any ‘report’ that says different to the received wisdom in those narrow ivory towers of Govt. depts. will just be discarded. Simple as. We could provide a hundred of them and none will be taken into account. All that matters is that we are seen to be leading the world in complying with our ‘treaty’ obligations to the FCTC, that pre magna carta bit of useless and unenforceable paper that Blair signed on behalf of us all. After all, these days, it’s the only thing we’ve got left to lead the world in, and the bas***ds will flog it for all it’s worth in the hope somebody will notice us. And at any cost!

  3. Sounds like the brits magna carta isnt worthy of the parchment it was written on any longer,but the spirit of the people who forced the government to sign it are still of that design 900 years later! Thats a lasting legacy…….

  4. Frank J says:

    The ‘Brits’ magna carta didn’t actually give voice to us mere peasants, only the Barons. King John signed it as he was on the losing side of the ‘Barons Wars’. It didn’t matter, anyway, as he ignored it the second after he signed it. The Barons Wars continued and John died in the marshes being hunted.

    Oh, how I wish!

  5. Jenny says:

    I honestly believe package design has nothing to do with teen’s choice in smokes. Its interesting to see , as a high school teacher, that they all tend to smoke the same brands, though. Could those be the less expensive ones or are they just what their parent have smoked and have laying around the house?

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