Young smokers’ in Victoria believe roll-your-own cigarettes are less harmful than traditional factory made cigarettes, according to statistics released today (December 18, 2017).

The Victorian Smoking and Health Survey, commissioned by Cancer Council Victoria and Quit Victoria, involved 4,000 adult smokers and revealed the startling figures that roll-your own tobacco use had increased in recent years.

In 2017 adult smokers aged between 18-29 were 43 per cent more likely to use roll-your own cigarettes, up from 29 percent in 2001.

Alarmingly, one in two Victorians aged 18-29 believe roll-your-own cigarettes are less harmful citing they are “organic” or “safer”.

Quashing the perception that roll-your-own cigarettes aren’t as harmful as factory made cigarettes is Quit Victoria Director, Dr Sarah White.

“It’s really alarming close to half of roll-your-own tobacco users believe it is less harmful than traditional cigarettes. There is a perception among smokers that these products are more ‘natural’ and don’t contain additives – but this couldn’t be further from the truth,” Dr White said.

“Not only do tobacco companies use similar additives in loose tobacco as they do in cigarettes, these additives tend to be added in even higher amounts,” warned Dr White.

Young adults and older Australians smoking any form of tobacco receive nicotine, tar and thousands of other disease-causing substances straight to the lungs and into the bloodstream.

In Australia, around 15,000 people each year will die from a smoking-related disease with 4,000 in Victoria alone.

The aim of releasing the Smoking and Health Study is to better educate young adults on the true health effects of tobacco and encourage the wider public to seek help to quit smoking.