For a study in the October 2013 Pediatrics, researchers worked one-on-one with more than 2,400 5- and 6-year-olds in Brazil, China, India, Nigeria, Pakistan and Russia, asking them to match logos with pictures of products. Eight cigarette brand logos were included. Overall, 68 percent of the children could identify at least one cigarette brand logo.
The study, “International Reach of Tobacco Marketing Among Young Children,” published online Sept. 30, found that across all six of these low- and middle-income countries, being slightly older and having someone in the household who uses tobacco were both significantly associated with being able to identify at least one cigarette brand logo.
Previous studies have shown that youth with high exposure and awareness levels to tobacco marketing are more likely to smoke. The authors of this study suggest that stronger regulations need to be instituted and better enforced in these countries where tobacco companies have made great efforts to encourage uptake of their products. Some actions suggested include:
- Removing logos from product packaging
- Changing the quantity, location and types of tobacco retailers
- Establishing minimum distances between the retailers and places frequented by young children
The authors also suggest changing how onscreen smoking images reach children and alerting parents and guardians to this “mature content” in programming.
Healthy Children Radio: Your Child & Advertisements (Audio)
Dina L.G. Borzekowski, Ed.D., the author of the Pediatrics study on cigarette advertising, joins the Healthy Children show on RadioMD to discuss her research on advertising’s impact on children.
Segment 1: Your Child & Advertisements: A Dangerous Combination