Packaging and health warnings are key in discouraging youths from using cannabis

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As more countries consider legalizing non-medical cannabis, new studies show that prominent health warnings and less attractive packaging should be mandated to reduce attractiveness to children.

In a recent study, researchers at the University of Waterloo found that the amount of advertising and promotions offered in packages changed the way people see products.

“For kids who are entering the market and trying to figure out if cannabis is a product that their friends think is cool, it’s the brand that can be used to project an image. image “Promotions are especially made in packages, so if a state or country is interested in protecting youth, our data will be in the package,” said David Hammond, a professor of public health sciences at Waterloo. Restrictions and comprehensive health Warnings are an effective way to do that.

“The more image lawmakers allow, the more attractive these will be. Cannabis products It is aimed at the general public, especially children. It’s up to the government where to draw the line. ”

A team of 45,378 people from Canada and the United States were randomized to determine the validity of the limited brand image and information from the government in the form of health warnings about how cannabis products are perceived. We gathered opinions from the participants. Participants were presented with four branding conditions, from no brand image, uniform color to complete brand image.They were also asked to evaluate how the attractiveness of the product differs based on the perceived harm, and how easy it is to remember. warning A message that addresses pregnancy, adolescent risk, and impaired drunk driving.

Researchers brand The image made the product slightly less attractive. In addition, the product was rated significantly less harmful on unbranded or limited white backgrounds than on colored backgrounds, and the message recall was significantly higher in Canadian and US health warnings.

“Canada’s warning message about cannabis products is more prominent and easier to understand than the United States,” Hammond said. “And our findings suggest that Canada’s comprehensive regulation appears to meet the goal of informing consumers about risks, including youth, and reducing their attractiveness.”

Impact of surveys, packaging colors, branding and health warnings bring the action Written by Hammond, Samantha Goodman, Vicky Rinard, and Marian Irani Palast, the journal will publish the perceived harm of cannabis products among Canadian and US respondents. Preventive medicine..

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For more information:
The impact of packaging colors, brands, and health warnings on the appeal and perceived harm of cannabis products among Samantha Goodman and other respondents in Canada and the United States. Preventive medicine (2021). DOI: 10.1016 / j.ypmed.2021.106788

Quote: Packaging and health warnings are the key to discouraging young people from using cannabis (September 15, 2021).

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