Cut Your Cancer Risk team:
Thanks for the feedback.
A few things:
- You're right that there is no hard evidence that plain packaging will denormalise smoking because it's never been implemented anywhere in the world before. There was no evidence that graphic health warnings would work when they were implemented either, but we now know they've been highly successful in helping people quit. What we do have is strong research that suggests implementing plain packaging will make smoking less attractive, especially to kids. Not sure where your proof is about pharmaceutical links to the fight for plain packaging - but of course people who work in "quitting related professions" for example employees of non-profit health organisations like the Cancer Council, want to reduce the toll smoking has on society in anyway we can.
- Cigarettes in Australia are more expensive than they are in Asia, so that's not why tourists come here and I doubt they're going to stop coming if we implement plain packaging. For example, the cheapest pack of cigarettes in China retail for around 20 cents! If cigarette regulation was a factor tourists took into account when they chose their holiday destination, then I think we would have already seen a fall. And one of the points of plain packaging is to minimise recognition of cigarette strength, as there's no such thing as "safer cigarettes." Cigarette strength descriptors falsely imply that there are.
- Tobacco is part of domestic trade that kills 15 thousand Australians every year while the flow on effects of that affect many times that number. Asbestos was once part of our trade... As for transaction time, the brand name and product line will still be clearly marked on the pack and will be easily readable while retailers will be permitted to use product lists and labels to readily locate particular products.