The Impact of Cigarette Packaging Design Among Young Females in Canada: Findings From a Discrete Choice Experiment

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Abstract

Introduction:

The tobacco industry uses various aspects of cigarette packaging design to market to specific groups. The current study examined the relative importance of five cigarette packaging attributes—pack structure (eg, “slims”), brand, branding, warning label size, and price—on perceptions of product taste, harm, and interest in trying, among young females in Canada.

Methods:

A discrete choice experiment was conducted with smoking and nonsmoking females, aged 16 to 24 (N = 448). Respondents were shown 10 choice sets, each containing four packs with different combinations of the attributes: pack structure (slim, lipstick, booklet, traditional); brand (“Vogue,” “du Maurier”); branding (branded, plain); warning label size (50%, 75%); and price ($8.45, $10.45). For each choice set, respondents chose the brand that they: (1) would rather try, (2) would taste better, and (3) would be less harmful, or “none.” For each outcome, the attributes’ impact on consumer choice was analyzed using a multinomial logit model.

Results:

The multinomial logit analyses revealed that young females weighted pack structure to be most important to their intention to try (46%), judgment of product taste (52%), and judgment of product harm (48%). Price and branding were weighted important in trial intent decisions (23% and 18%, respectively) and product taste judgments (29% and 15%, respectively). Whereas warning label size and brand were weighted important when judging product harm (23% and 17%, respectively).

Conclusion:

The findings suggest that standardized cigarette packaging may decrease demand and reduce misleading perceptions about product harm among young females.

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