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Trends in cigarette brand preference among Mexican smokers: the rise of Pall Mall
  1. Daniela Sarahí Gutiérrez-Torres1,
  2. Belen Saenz de Miera Juarez2,
  3. Luz Myriam Reynales-Shigematsu1,
  4. Luis Zavala-Arciniega1,3,
  5. James Thrasher4
  1. 1 Departamento de Investigación sobre Tabaco, Centro de Investigación en Salud Poblacional, Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública, Cuernavaca, México
  2. 2 Economics, Universidad Autonoma de Baja California Sur, La Paz, Mexico
  3. 3 Department of Epidemiology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
  4. 4 Department of Health Promotion, Education and Behavior, University of South Carolina Arnold School of Public Health, Columbia, South Carolina, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Luz Myriam Reynales-Shigematsu, Departamento de Investigación sobre Tabaco, Centro de Investigación en Salud Poblacional, Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública, Cuernavaca 62100, Mexico; lreynales{at}


Objective To analyse trends in cigarette brand preference among Mexican smokers during the implementation period of key WHO’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control recommendations.

Methods Data came from two nationally representative, comparable surveys, namely the Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2009 and 2015 and the National Survey on Addictions 2011 and 2016. Logistic models were used to estimate the adjusted prevalence of each brand purchased, as well as individual correlates of purchasing the single brand with a large growth over the study period. Multiple linear regressions were also employed to analyse cigarette prices across brands.

Results Six brand families accounted for about 90% of the cigarette market, with Marlboro clearly dominating all brands at 54%–61%. Only the share of Pall Mall brand, however, registered a rapid increase over the period—from 1% in 2009 to 14% in 2016. Women and younger smokers (15–24 years) were more likely to prefer Pall Mall over other brands. While the typical price segmentation between international (premium) brands and national (discount) brands was observed, the price of Pall Mall is within the range of the latter. Importantly, most varieties of this brand include flavour capsule varieties (FCVs).

Conclusions This study suggests that the strong campaign of brand migration, the pricing strategy and the aggressive introduction of FCVs expanded Pall Mall in the Mexican cigarette market. Therefore, better control policies of cigarette contents and taxes that reduce price differentials across brands should be encouraged to promote public health.

  • low-/middle-income country
  • packaging and labelling
  • price
  • priority/special populations

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  • Contributors LZ-A conceived the research. DSG-T conducted the statistical analyses and wrote the manuscript. BSdM-J assisted with price analyses and interpretation of the data, as well as in the drafting. LMR-S and JT assisted with data interpretation and critically revised the article. All authors approved the final version for publication.

  • Funding This manuscript was granted by the Mérida Initiative (project number SINLEC17CA2011) and the National Commission against Addictions (CONADIC) through the project "Strengthening the policy framework to reduce the gap with WHO FCTC in Mexico" supported with funding from Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use (

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement Data are available in a public, open access repository. Data of the Global Adult Tobacco Survey Mexico 2009 and 2015 are available from CDC's GTSS Data website and data of the National Survey on Adiccions 2011 and 2016 are available from