Do experts believe that plain packaging would reduce smoking rates?

Close-up of electronic financial document on the desk, office workers consulting in the backgroundAustralia became the first country to introduce standardised packaging of tobacco products in December 2012.

As there was no way of examining the effectiveness of standardised packaging directly at that point, we asked experts from around the world to estimate the likely impact:

  • experts believed that the most likely outcomes would be a modest reduction in adult smoking prevalence (1 percentage point), but a greater reduction in the proportion of children trying smoking (3 percentage points).


Impact of plain packaging of tobacco products on smoking in adults and children: an elicitation of international experts’ estimates. Pechey, Spiegelhalter & Marteau. 2013.

Access full textAccess additional data (notes made during the elicitation interviews, released following an FOI request for unpublished data)