Young women smokers' perceptions and use of counterfeit cigarettes: Would plain packaging make a difference?



Moodie C, Purves R, McKell J & De Andrade M (2014) Young women smokers' perceptions and use of counterfeit cigarettes: Would plain packaging make a difference?. Addiction Research and Theory, 22 (3), pp. 263-270.

Opponents of plain tobacco packaging argue that it would make production of counterfeit tobacco products cheaper; lower costs for consumers; confuse consumers in respect to product authenticity; and increase appeal and purchase of counterfeit tobacco. We explored the last of these contentions with young women smokers (N = 49), aged 16-24 years, recruited in Glasgow (Scotland). Participants were firstly asked about their perceptions and purchase of counterfeit cigarettes. Each group was then shown a mock display of legitimate and counterfeit plain cigarette packs. All the packs shown were the same colour (brown) with the only difference being the price and brand name. Participants were asked what brand they would smoke if all cigarettes came in brown (plain) packaging. Purchase of counterfeit cigarettes was lower for 16-17 year olds than 18-24 year olds. Perceptions of counterfeit cigarettes were negative, with concerns expressed about content and taste. All participants said that if pack appearance was standardised they would continue to smoke the same brand of legitimate cigarettes that they currently smoke or down-trade to cheaper legitimate brands. Non-users of counterfeit cigarettes indicated that they would remain non-users should all cigarettes come in uniform packaging. Counterfeit users, at least those willing to smoke counterfeit cigarettes again, indicated that they would still buy counterfeit cigarettes if pack appearance was standardised, primarily due to the lower price. For young women smokers in this study, plain packaging had no bearing on perceived appeal of counterfeit cigarettes.Read More:

Illicit tobacco; packaging and labelling; public policy

Addiction Research and Theory: Volume 22, Issue 3

FundersCancer Research UK and Cancer Research UK
Publication date31/12/2014
Publication date online09/2013
Date accepted by journal15/08/2013
PublisherInforma Healthcare

People (3)


Miss Jennifer McKell
Miss Jennifer McKell

Research Fellow 1, Institute for Social Marketing

Dr Crawford Moodie
Dr Crawford Moodie

Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Social Marketing

Dr Richard Purves
Dr Richard Purves

Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Social Marketing

Projects (2)