Ceri Dell, Richard Edwards, Anna Gilmore, Lindsay Robertson and Janet Hoek*
Dell C, Edwards R, Gilmore A, Robertson L, Hoek J. Tobacco industry ‘transformation’ – more smoke and mirrors? Public Health Expert Blog. 7 June 2022. https://blogs.otago.ac.nz/pubhealthexpert/tobacco-industry-transformation-more-smoke-and-mirrors/
This blog examines tobacco industry claims that it is ‘transforming’ and the possible implications for public health. We draw extensively on an article examining tobacco industry transformation1 from the Tobacco Control 30th anniversary issue and consider a response from tobacco industry spokespeople.2 Finally, we review tobacco companies’ responses to the Smokefree Aotearoa Action Plan and whether their reactions support claims the tobacco industry is transforming.
Janet Hoek and Philip Gendall
Major tobacco companies have presented a vision of a smokefree world, where smoking prevalence has fallen to minimal levels. This goal has much in common with national tobacco endgame goals and appears to create opportunities for health researchers and smokefree advocates to work collaboratively with a well-resourced industry to achieve a common goal. Yet, despite their public statements, tobacco companies continue to develop new products, such as flavour capsule cigarettes, that enhance smoking’s appeal. This product innovation strategy confirms long-held doubts about the sincerity of tobacco companies’ intentions. We report on our recently published study that examined how flavour capsule cigarettes appeal to non-smokers and smokers.