Widespread belief that organic and additive-free tobacco products are less harmful than regular tobacco products: Results from the 2017 US health information national trends survey

Jennifer L. Pearson, Meghan Moran, Cristine D. Delnevo, Andrea C. Villanti, M. Jane Lewis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Significance: US smokers of Natural American Spirit, a brand marketed as "organic" and "additive-free," are more likely than other cigarette smokers to believe that their brand might be less harmful than other brands. This article (1) describes the prevalence of belief that "organic" and "additive-free" tobacco is less harmful than regular tobacco products in the US population and (2) describes the sociodemographic characteristics of adults who believe tobacco products with these descriptors are less harmful. Methods: Data were drawn from the 2017 Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS), a nationally representative survey of US adults. Logistic regression models were used to examine correlates of the belief that "organic" or "additive-free" tobacco products are less harmful than regular tobacco products. Results: Overall, 26.7% of US adults and 45.3% of adult smokers believe that "organic" tobacco products are less harmful than regular tobacco products. Similarly, 35.2% of US adults and 47.1% of smokers believe that "additive-free" tobacco products are less harmful. When examining gender, age, education, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, and smoking status, only age (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] ∼0.98, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.97, 0.99 for both outcomes) and smoking status (current vs. never smokers, aOR ∼1.78, 95% CI 1.03, 3.07 for both outcomes) were correlates of believing that "organic" or "additive-free" tobacco is less harmful than regular tobacco products. Conclusions: Belief that "organic" and "additive-free" tobacco products are less harmful than other products is widespread. Younger adults and current smokers are most likely to be misinformed by "organic" or "additive-free" tobacco product descriptors. Implications: Belief that "organic" and "additive-free" tobacco products are less harmful than other products is widespread among US adults and most prevalent among smokers. Removal of terms that incorrectly imply reduced harm may correct current and future consumers' misperceptions about the brand.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)970-973
Number of pages4
JournalNicotine and Tobacco Research
Volume21
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Widespread belief that organic and additive-free tobacco products are less harmful than regular tobacco products: Results from the 2017 US health information national trends survey'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this