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Open Access Memorability of Cigarette Advertisements Making "Natural" Claims Among Adolescents

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Objectives: The tobacco industry has a history of making "natural" claims in advertisements. We report how viewing advertisements with such claims affected what adolescents found memorable. Methods: Adolescent boys (N = 1220; 11-16 years old) were randomly assigned to view a Natural American Spirit (NAS) or other brand cigarette advertisement, and were asked what they remembered about the advertisement. Survey-weighted logistic regression models assessed whether memorability of advertisement components differed by NAS advertisement exposure. Results: Adolescents viewing a NAS advertisement (vs another brand) had lower odds of finding memorable the advertisement's warning (OR = 0.58; 95% CI: [0.34, 0.98]) or brand (OR = 0.25; 95% CI: [0.11, 0.54]). They had higher odds of mentioning tobacco (OR = 2.33; 95% CI: [1.49, 3.63]) and packaging (OR = 2.57; 95% CI: [1.51, 4.37]). An estimated 6.7% of those viewing an NAS advertisement said the product was not addictive. Conclusions: Reduced-harm claims on cigarette advertisements may affect what adolescents find salient about the advertisement. As the FDA's agreement with Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company to remove these claims is not inclusive of all reduced-harm claims and does not apply to other companies, findings underscore the need for prohibiting all reduced-harm claims from cigarette advertisements.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 2019

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  • Tobacco Regulatory Science (Electronic ISSN 2333-9748) is a rigorously peer-reviewed online scientific journal for the dissemination of research relevant to the regulation of tobacco products. The journal content includes a broad array of research domains, including chemistry, biology, behavior, community, and population-level surveillance and epidemiology, as well as knowledge syntheses (eg, meta-analyses or state-of-the-art reviews) and analytic modeling. All articles describe the policy relevance of the research outcomes. Given the global nature of tobacco regulation, particularly as a result of international and national policies, Tobacco Regulatory Science publishes high quality research that is relevant to global regulatory needs and requirements. Tobacco Regulatory Science is published electronically 6 times per year.
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