The Health Department had weighed into the smoking debate with “new” information.
There are two things that really jumped out at me:
Question: Have tobacco sales increased since the introduction of tobacco plain packaging on 1 December 2012?
Answer: Tobacco sales data are not publicly available.
The Health Department then waffles on about the ABS numbers that are the source of all the excitement.
Then there is this graph:
There is a long-term downward trend in tobacco usage in Australia. We all know and understand this to be the case. But look at the impact policy has had on usage. Nothing. The downward trend doesn’t seem to respond much to ever increasing regulation.
Must be fantastic work – regulate an industry and have no metric to demonstrate the efficacy of any particular policy.