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How do tobacco retail displays affect cessation attempts? Findings from a qualitative study

Abstract

Background Tobacco retail displays promote smoking experimentation among youth; however, little is known about their effect on smokers making a quit attempt. Calls to ban tobacco retail displays would be strengthened if this measure would deter initiation and support cessation.

Methods Semistructured in-depth interviews were conducted with 20 individuals, from two New Zealand provincial cities, who had attempted to quit smoking in the last 6 months.

Results Tobacco products had high visibility, and elicited emotional and physical reactions that created on-going temptation, complicated cessation attempts and stimulated impulse purchases. Participants strongly supported banning tobacco retail displays primarily because they thought this would reduce youth initiation, promote greater consistency with smoke-free promotions and assist those attempting to quit.

Conclusions The effects of tobacco retail displays on smokers making a cessation attempt are explored. The findings are consistent with experimental and survey research, and expand a growing evidence base that supports government-mandated bans on tobacco retail displays.

  • Point of sale
  • cessation
  • qualitative
  • advertising and promotion
  • qualitative study
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