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Tobacco company launches ads saying plain packaging doesn't work

(iStock Photo)

JTI-MacDonald claims plain packaging will make it easier for criminals to sell cheap, illegal tobacco

Canadian Cancer Society feels it's another campaign of misinformation

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Earlier this week, we told you about a new campaign by a tobacco company suggesting plain packaging for cigarettes doesn’t work. But two groups who deal with the potentially dangerous aftermath of smoking disagree.

JTI-MacDonald is claiming plain packaging will make it easier for criminals to sell cheap, illegal tobacco.

However, Jenny Byford with the Canadian Cancer Society feels it’s part of just another campaign of misinformation. “The tobacco industry has tried to use the counterfeit argument to stop tobacco control effort in the past from everything to use it against health warnings, retail display bans, bans on flavoured tobacco and tobacco tax increases.”

She adds the tobacco industry can’t be believed on the contraband issue. “Given that all three major companies in Canada have been convicted of contraband in 2008 and 2010.”

Scott McDonald with the BC Lung Association says other countries are using plain packaging. “There is a lot of thought that has gone into this by politicians and by scientists, and I think the scientists are showing that plain packaging does have a positive effect in terms of reducing consumption.”

He adds unregulated tobacco is often transported into a country by a shipping container or driven across rivers that separate countries.