The association between flavor capsule cigarette use and sociodemographic variables: Evidence from Chile

Guillermo Paraje, Daniel Araya, Jeffrey Drope

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose The objective of this article is to examine the factors associated with smoking of flavor capsule cigarettes in Chile, where the popularity of these products has increased dramatically, a trend increasingly observed across the world. Methods A representative poll of 851 smokers in Metropolitan Santiago de Chile, which comprises 40% of the country’s total population, was implemented in mid-2017. Smokers were given a questionnaire that collected socio-demographic information and information on smoking patterns. Four discrete-choice models were estimated on the decision to smoke flavor capsule cigarettes to better understand the statistical relationships between traits of smokers and the consumption of flavor capsule cigarettes. Results The results of these models show that each year less in a smoker’s age increases the likelihood of preferring flavor capsule cigarettes by, on average, between 0.8 and 0.9 percentage points. If the smoker is a woman, the likelihood of preferring flavor capsule cigarettes increases between 13.4 and 13.5 percentage points. Results also reveal a positive relationship between the price paid and the consumption of flavor capsule cigarettes, indicating that these cigarettes tend to be more expensive. There is no statistical relationship between participation in the labor market and smoking these products. Conclusions Chile has the world’s highest prevalence of flavor capsule cigarette smoking, which is concentrated among young people (25 years and younger) and females. No relationship between socioeconomic status and use of these products is found, though there are indications that such relationship may exist, as they were at the time of study 14% more expensive, on average, than conventional non-flavored cigarettes. As in most countries, the tobacco industry appears to be deliberately promoting these products with the goal of halting or slowing the decline in cigarette consumption in Chile. Thus, to reduce cigarette consumption (especially among youth), restricting or forbidding cigarette flavorings of all types, including flavor capsules, would be an effective strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0224217
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume14
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2019

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