2.1 Production and trade data as a basis for estimating tobacco consumption

Data on quantities of tobacco products manufactured in Australia are available electronically back to 1957.1 Various Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) publications have also included statistics on exports and imports of products including tobacco, for example see ABS 5368.0 International Trade in Goods and Services, Australia,2 but historical data on tobacco exports and imports have not ever been compiled into a single document or time-series dataset.

2.1.1 Tobacco products manufactured in Australia

Table 2.1.1 shows the volume of total tobacco products produced in Australia since 1957. Publication of data on production of cigarettes and other tobacco products was discontinued by the ABS in 2004.

Data for selected years are plotted in Figure 2.1.1.

The total weight of tobacco products manufactured in Australia has clearly declined substantially since it peaked at 33 300 metric tonnes in 1975.

Table 2.1.1
Tobacco products manufactured in Australia, 1956–57 to 2003–04 (metric tonnes)

Year ending June

Metric tonnes

 

Year ending June

Metric tonnes

 

Year ending June

Metric tonnes

1957

21 926

  1973 29 918   1989 28 184

1958

22 427

  1974 32 341   1990 27 401

1959

23 761

  1975 33 332   1991 28 005

1960

24 655

  1976 32 606   1992 25 509

1961

23 742

  1977 29 590   1993 24 693

1962

25 411

  1978 31 629  

1994

24 532

1963

25 338

  1979 29 889   1995 24 024

1964

25 944

  1980 30 586   1996 22 252

1965

27 846

  1981 32 009   1997 23 684

1966

27 210

  1982 32 251   1998 22 046

1967

27 774

  1983 31 407   1999 21 751

1968

27 336

  1984 28 801   2000 20 661

1969

29 063

  1985 27 581   2001 20 092

1970

30 832

  1986 28 976   2002 19 720

1971

30 926

  1987 30 270   2003 20 479

1972

31 903

  1988 28 090   2004 20 069

Source: ABS Manufacturing production, Australia, 20063

 

Figure 2.1.1

Figure 2.1.1
Tobacco products manufactured in Australia, five-yearly, 1959–60 to 2003–04, (tonnes)

Source: ABS 8301.0.55.001 Manufacturing Production, Australia, June 2006, Time series data, Table 1 Commodity Production5

2.1.2 Manufactured tobacco products, adjusted for imports and exports

Data on manufactured tobacco products are of limited usefulness in estimating consumption as they include tobacco products produced for export and do not include tobacco products imported into Australia.

In February 2003 the Tobacco Free Initiative of the World Health Organization (WHO) released a discussion paper on trends in cigarette use that did include estimates of such exports and imports. The analysis covered several dozen countries including Australia for the years 1970 to 2000.4 These estimates were based on data from a combination of official trade statistics and data collected by research agencies in surveys of tobacco companies. The Australian data on numbers of cigarettes produced came from the United States Department of Agriculture from 1970 to 1989, and then from (private sector) market research agency, ERC Statistics International Plc.i 5 Data on quantities of cigarettes imported and exported came from databases compiled by the United Nations.6, 7 Estimates for Australia are included in Table 2.1.2.ii iii

Table 2.1.2
Estimated domestic consumption of cigarettes: cigarettes manufactured in and imported to Australia each year, less those exported, Australia 1970 to 2010 (millions of cigarettes)

 

Cigarettes produced
A

Cigarettes imported
B

Cigarettes exported
C

Total estimated cigarettes consumed
A + B – C

1970

26 848

606

594

26 860

1980

35 185

796

291

35 690

1990

35 575

537

647

35 465

1995

31 271

830

1 122

30 979

1996

30 767

774

3 106

28 435

1997

30 035

580

2 880

27 735

1998

29 939

640

3 339

27 240

1999

28 018

1013

1 289

27 742

2000

23 576

1444

1 170

23 850

2001

23 357

1 918

1 418

23 857

2002

23 565

1 899

1 947

23 517

2003

23 474

1 676

1 250

23 900

2004

23 228

1 827

18iii

25 037

2005

23 892

2 700

90

26 502

2006

22 304

2 436

37

24 703

2007

Data available for purchase from ERC Statistics International Plc

2 960

6 865

 

2008

2 438

3 944

 

2009

2 716

3 970

 

2010

24 460

3 206

3 596

24 070

Sources: Guindon and Boisclair 2003,4 ERC Statistics International Plc 2001,5 Food and Agriculture Organization 2001,6 United Nations Statistics Division 20007 and 20119 and Eriksen, Mackay and Ross 201210

Notes: See Appendix 1, Guindon and Boisclair 2003 for the Tobacco Free Initiative of the World Health Organization 4 based on data produced by the United States Department of Agriculture (production in 1970 to 1989) 199611. ERC Statistics International Plc 20015 relates to production from 1990 to 2000. Import data to 2000 is from the Food and Agriculture Organization 2001.6 Export data to 2000 is from the United Nations

Using this mix of the available data sets, it would seem that the total number of cigarettes consumed in Australia peaked in 1981, increased slightly over the early 1990s and declined by about one-third between 1990 and 2000 and then increased slightly over the 2000s.

Note: these data relate to cigarettes only, not to any other type of tobacco product.

2.1.3 Manufactured and imported tobacco products per capita

To take account of increases in population over this 30-year period, Guindon and Boisclair's report for the WHO also included estimates of per capita consumption. Per capita consumption is calculated using the number of people 15 years and over.iv The figures included in the WHO study and reproduced in Figure 2.1.2 (and the figures since 2001 using the additional data source indicated above) are three-year running averages based on consumption in the listed and previous two years.

These data suggest that consumption of cigarettes has declined significantly since 1970, with almost a 50% reduction in the estimated number of cigarettes consumed per capita between 1980 (at which time the average per capita cigarette consumption for the previous three years had peaked at 3215 cigarettes) and 2010 (by which time average per capita consumption for the previous three years had reduced to little more than 1250 cigarettes per person 15 years and older).v

 

Figure 2.1.2
Figure 2.1.2
Cigarettes produced in and imported into Australia per person 15 years and over, 1970 to 2010, three-year running averages (numbers of cigarettes)

Sources: Guindon and Boisclair 2003,4 ERC Statistics International Plc 2001,5 Food and Agriculture Organization 2001,6 United Nations Statistics Division 20007 and Eriksen, Mackay and Ross10

Notes: Guindon and Boisclair for the Tobacco Free Initiative of the WHO4 based on data produced by the United States Department of Agriculture (production in 1970 and 1980),11 ERC Statistics International Plc relates to production from 1990 to 2005,5 imports from Food and Agriculture Organization6 and exports from United Nations Statistics Division7, plus population data from the United Nations7 (refer Appendices 4 and 5) Euromonitor figures for 2007 to 2009.i 14 Eriksen, Mackay and Ross use data from ERC International 2010.12

 

i Estimates for tobacco products other than cigarettes were not included in this analysis. As can be seen in Section 2.2, smoking tobacco made up 14% of the total weight of tobacco excised in 1970 and about 5% in 2000 and about 11% in 2010.

ii The World Health Organization analysis estimates numbers of cigarettes imported and exported based on the total weight of product, assuming that an average cigarette weighed 1 g. The actual weight of cigarettes imported is considerably lower, with 99% of cigarettes imported weighing less than 0.8 g–refer row 4, Table 2.4, p10 AIHW Drugs in Australia 2010s.8

iii The export figures for 2004 to 2006 seem uncharacteristically low. They are, however, what is recorded in the ComTrade data base.

iv In most countries, prevalence of smoking among young people starts to approach adult levels by the mid-teens. Countries vary widely in the proportion that children make up of the total population. Dividing total quantities of tobacco by total numbers of persons would give a misleadingly low estimate of tobacco consumption in countries where children make up a very high proportion of the population. For these reasons, most international studies of tobacco consumption divide estimates of tobacco by the number of persons 15 years and over.12

v Note that data on cigarette production reported by Euromonitor for years earlier to 2007 differs to that reported by ERC for the same years.

References

1. Australian Bureau of Statistics. 8301.0 Manufacturing production, Australia, Jun 2004. Canberra: ABS, 2004. Available from: http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/ProductsbyReleaseDate/0EE34227E473B969CA256FFD007A2D4F?OpenDocument

2. Australian Bureau of Statistics. 5368.0 International Trade in Goods and Services, Australia Canberra: ABS, 2011. Available from: http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/ProductsbyCatalogue/A5FB33BD2E3CC68FCA257496001547A1?OpenDocument

3. Australian Bureau of Statistics. 8301.0.55.001 Manufacturing production, Australia, Jun 2006. Canberra: ABS, 2006. Updated September 2006 [viewed October 2006] ; Available from: http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/ProductsbyCatalogue/846FE96282EACCBBCA256F48007063C6?OpenDocument

4. Guindon G and Boisclair D. Past, Current and Future Trends in Tobacco Use. New York: The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development/The World Bank, 2003. Available from: http://siteresources.worldbank.org/HEALTHNUTRITIONANDPOPULATION/Resources/281627-1095698140167/Guindon-PastCurrent-whole.pdf

5. ERC Statistics International Plc. The World Cigarette Market: The 1998 Survey. Suffolk, Great Britain: 2001. Available from: http://www.erc-world.com/

6. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). FAO statistical databases. 2001. [viewed not by author] ; Available from: http://www.fao.org/

7. United Nations Statistics Division. Commodity trade statistics data base. 2000. [viewed not by author] ; Available from: http://unstats.un.org/unsd/comtrade/

8. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Drugs in Australia 2010: tobacco, alcohol and other drugs. Drug statistics series no. 27, cat. no. PHE 154. Canberra: AIHW, 2011. Available from: http://www.aihw.gov.au/publication-detail/?id=10737420497&tab=2

9. United Nations Statistics Division. Commodity trade statistics data base 2001 to 2010. 2011. [viewed December 2011] ; Available from: http://comtrade.un.org/db/default.aspx

10. Eriksen M, Mackay J and Ross H. The Tobacco Atlas. 4th Edition. New York and Altanta, GA: World Lung Foundation and American Cancer Society, 2012. Available from: http://www.tobaccoatlas.org/

11. US Department of Agriculture Economic Research Centre. Tobacco Statistics (94012). 1996. [viewed not by author] ; Available from: http://www.ers.usda.gov/Data/InternationalFoodDemand/

12. ERC Statistics International Plc. The World Cigarette Market: the 2010 Survey - Australia. London: ERC Statistics International Plc, 2011. Available from: http://www.erc-world.com/sample/tob/Cigarette%20Indexes/Australia.pdf

13. Chapman S. Changes in adult cigarette consumption per head in 128 countries 1986–90. Tobacco Control 1992;1:281–4. Available from: http://tobaccocontrol.bmj.com/cgi/reprint/1/4/281

14. Euromonitor International. Tobacco in Australia, Global Market Information Database, 2010. London: Euromonitor International, 2011. Updated September 2010 [viewed 9 December 2011] ; Available from: http://www.euromonitor.com

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