Natural American Spirit (NAS), a heavily advertised and top selling premium cigarette brand popular among young adults that promotes itself to consumers using the terms “additive free,” “natural,” and “organic.” The FDA has taken steps to stop NAS from using the misleading product descriptors “natural” and “additive-free” but the issue remains unsettled. This project provides scientific evidence on the terms “natural,” “additive-free,” and “organic,” use of the claim “natural” as part of the brand name, and the use of written claims that may imply the product is “natural” and “additive-free” (e.g., “ingredients: tobacco and water”). Specifically, we aim to 1) understand consumer perceptions of the NAS brand name, descriptors (e.g, “organic”, “Tobacco Ingredients: Tobacco and Water”), and imagery in NAS advertising by conducting twelve focus groups with young adult (ages 18-24) smokers and nonsmokers, 2) assess the effect of such descriptors in print advertising on cigarette risk perceptions and use intentions among 2400 young adult (18-24) smokers and non-smokers using a between-subjects online experiment, and 3) examine population differences in tobacco perceptions, use intentions, and use between NAS and other brand (OB) smokers, comparing them over time via longitudinal analysis of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) survey study.
- Project dates: 09/14/2018 – 08/31/2023
- Cristine Delnevo, Ph.D. – Rutgers University
- Andrew Strasser, Ph.D. – University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
- Co-Investigator: Jennifer Pearson, Ph.D.