News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


Plain packs will help prevent a new generation of smokers

Plain packs will help prevent a new generation of smokers


Plain packaging for tobacco products must be introduced without delay to prevent tobacco companies from marketing their products to the detriment of our young people’s health, says the Paediatric Society’s Dr Philip Pattemore.

Speaking about the Smoke-free Environments (Tobacco Plain Packaging) Amendment Bill, Dr Pattemore said at least 39 child morbidity and mortality risks have been associated with exposure to tobacco smoke including childhood cancers, miscarriage, cleft palate, SUDI, asthma, obesity, high blood pressure, learning difficulties and behavioural problems.

He said plain packaging will remove the ability of the tobacco industry to surreptitiously market their deadly products to young people and to the adults whose smoking affects them.

“It’s well known the tobacco industry views the cigarette pack as a marketing tool, especially towards young people. Their published internal documents have shown how heavily they rely on their packs to make smoking attractive in the face of existing advertising restrictions.”

In addition to changing the colour and look of tobacco packets, the Bill’s amendments will also focus on increasing the size and effectiveness of current health warnings on all tobacco packaging. The aim is to make the health messages harder hitting and more relevant to New Zealanders. The Paediatric Society of New Zealand fully supports the Government’s commitment to making Aotearoa New Zealand a smokefree nation before 2025, and applauds the leadership and legislation that works towards this goal.

“Packaging often includes descriptors, such as “smooth”, “low tar” and “menthol” complemented by colours that are designed to give false impressions of lower toxicity. By placing these cigarettes in uniform plain packs and increasing the size of the health warnings, consumers will get the clear message that cigarettes branded in these ways are no less poisonous or deadly.”

Furthermore, he says, studies have shown cigarettes in plain packaging are looked upon less favourably than those in branded packets. In one study smokers inferred cigarettes in plain packs would be less rich in tobacco, less satisfying and of lower quality.

“When plain packs were introduced in Australia, Quitline and Facebook sites were inundated with comments saying cigarettes from plain packs tasted pathetic, sickening and lacked flavour. Many even pointed the finger at the government, arguing they must have done something to make cigarettes taste different. That just proves how powerful pack branding really is.

“Adults in childbearing years quitting smoking must take centre stage because this is the only way to ensure a smokefree environment for children. Smokefree parents provide a role model for smokefree young people and erode the image that smoking is a desirable adult behaviour. Plain packaging is essential for this to happen.”

Dr Pattemore said the time to implement plain packaging is now and there’s no point waiting to see what happens in Australia, where tobacco companies are challenging the government’s legislation.

“Delaying plain packaging while we wait for the outcome of challenges to Australia’s plain packaging law means delaying an important step in protecting children from tobacco marketing.”

The Paediatric Society of New Zealand is the national professional association of paediatricians, paediatric nurses and other child health professionals. It strongly supports the early implementation of the Smoke-free Environments (Tobacco Plain Packaging) Amendment Bill, as it directly impacts on the appeal of tobacco to young people, and their uptake of smoking.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Memorabilia: Te Papa Buys Peter Snell Singlet

Te Papa has purchased the singlet worn by Peter Snell at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics at an auction this morning at Cordy’s auction house in Auckland. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Review Of Books: Women At The Centre

In the first chapter of her epic History of New Zealand Women, Barbara Brookes places a version of the Māori creation story alongside that of the Pākehā colonists, setting the scene for how each society saw women. The contrast is startling. More>>

In Auckland Art Gallery: A Tour Of Duty

I had already started my journey through the exhibited collections when an audio announcement about a guided tour to embark shortly from the foyer was made, I decided to join in. Why not? More>>

Art: ‘Holiday’ Wins IHC Art Awards

An intricate embroidered cushion by Wellington artist Jo-Anne Tapiki has won the 2016 IHC Art Awards and $5000. Jo-Anne started working from IHC’s Arts on High studio in Lower Hutt 18 months ago and this is the first time she has entered the competition. More>>

‘Quasi’: Christchurch Art Gallery Reveals Rooftop Sculpture

Christchurch-born and internationally renowned artist Ronnie van Hout has had a huge hand in Christchurch Art Gallery's latest outdoor installation. More>>

Obituary: Last 28th Maori Battalion A Company Veteran Dies

Charlie Petera, the final surviving member of A-Company of the 28th Maori Battalion has died at his home in Ngataki, Northland last night surrounded by his whanau. He was 91 years old. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news