THE tobacco industry's claims that the move to plain packaging would harm the business of small retailers, increase the use of illicit tobacco and turn smokers to cheaper Asian brands, have come to nought.
In December 2012, amidst strong protests from the tobacco giants, Australia became the first country to introduce standard no-frills packaging for tobacco products.
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A study by Cancer Council Victoria released this week shows that there was no credence for those predictions, with the same number of smokers buying their cigarettes from supermarkets in 2013 as there were in 2011.
The use of low-cost Asian brands didn't change much from 2011 when it was 1.3% to 1.9% in 2013 while only 1.7% of those smokers surveyed bought their tobacco from illicit sources.
- APN NEWSDESK