Poo Sticks

by Dick Puddlecote

Poo Sticks I expect there are some UK politicians thinking that once plain packaging is passed (despite overwhelming public rejection) there can’t be much else for tobacco control industry executives to nag them about. They’d be wrong.

Please note that this is from New Zealand and not from The Daily Mash.

Public health researchers say the Government’s next step after introducing plain packaging for tobacco should be to make cigarettes ugly by changing them to a dark green or brown colour which made young people think of “slime, vomit or pooh”.

A tobacco control lobby group told a parliamentary committee that cigarettes themselves were the “new canvas” for anti-smoking initiatives.


[Researcher and former public health
physician Professor Richard Edwards, representing anti-smoking
group Aspire2025, said] “Dissuasive sticks would remove the final illusion – the idea that clean white sticks with purposeful but actually useless filters can somehow purify what is an inherently toxic product. They expose cigarettes for what they are.”

The final illusion? Wasn’t ‘glitzy’ packaging supposed to be that just recently?

With plain packaging, all the sticks were mandated by the Aussie government to be white because brands such as Sobranie Cocktails – which I haven’t seen since the 1970s until the prohibitionists reminded us they still exist – are guaranteed to create craving for tobacco in kids, but now white is a dangerous colour too?

Is this an admission that they already know plain packaging in New Zealand will fail just as it has in Australia?

Or does anyone else get the image of a bunch of highly-paid anti-smoking lobbyists, sitting round a table astonished at the gullibility of politicians having legislated their daft ideas in such short order, and desperately trying to come up with something – anything – to extend the life of their grants and salaries?

Incidentally, the ‘research’ consisted of interviews with a whopping 14 adult social smokers aged 18 to 24, and was led by Janet Hoek. Janet is a botanist, zoologist and Beowulf expert from the Marketing (?) department of New Zealand’s Otago University who has – for many years – called for processed food to be treated like it were tobacco.

She likes these kind of tiny sample sizes to reach a pre-determined conclusion, as she proved when presenting a published study of 13 adult social smokers which ‘proved’ that there was strong support for “extending the smoke-free areas outside bars”.

Of course, this was brilliant and sound science, whereas …

The “science” of e-cigarettes:gushing anecdotes from 11 self-selected vapers. This was actually published ascpjournal.org/content/8/1/5/…
— Simon Chapman (@SimonChapman6) March 8, 2013

Got all that?

So coloured sticks are evil and plain white good when campaigning for plain packaging. But once that’s in the bag, plain white is seductive and therefore evil and must be changed to pea, ash, tan or sand colour … which are good. Meanwhile, sample sizes of 13 and 14 are excellent evidence-based research, whereas 11 is just a joke.

Insane doesn’t adequately describe these people any more, does it?Pk623BPgfDw


  1. “….a dark green or brown colour which made young people think of “slime, vomit or pooh”.
    And this is supposed to put youngsters off???!

  2. Why not make them the shape of turds – that will REALLY put kids off smoking!

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