Tobacco Trends is an annual monitoring publication reporting on Tobacco use behaviours. Indicators reported on annually include smoking prevalence, tobacco consumption and supply and tobacco use youth. Any additional behavioural or time trend information reported may change from year to year.
The ability to produce reliable national estimates of the prevalence of smoking in New Zealand continues to grow every year. Three national data sources were available in 2006: the NZ Tobacco Use Survey, ACNielsen data on time trends and the Census. This document provides a brief update on these data sources and others previously presented in Tobacco Trends.
The 2006 Census is the most up to date and reliable representation of smoking in New Zealand. In 2006, the prevalence of smoking from the Census for the population aged 15+ years was 20.7%. Information on time trends from 1976 indicate that overall, though the prevalence of smoking has slowed, it continues to decrease gradually over time. Smoking among Year 10 students continued to decline as well between 2005 and 2006; 10.7% to 10.1% among girls and 7.2% to 6.2% among boys.
Compared with 2005, tobacco consumption per capita decreased by around 1.6% to 1016 cigarette equivalents per capita (15+) in 2006.
The Census was a key source of information in 2006 for calculating actual population estimates and robust breakdowns by District Health Board. Analyses from the Census provide good indication that smoking is a bigger problem in some regions than others.