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Over 80% of Japanese adults find tobacco smoke unpleasant: survey

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Increased cost of acquisition (to reduce the incidence of new smokers), health rules that make smoking in public less convenient, and (perhaps most importantly) smoking becoming socially unacceptable are making a real difference. When I first came to Japan more than 30 years ago, half of all adults (especially us men) or more smoked. Now very few of my younger co-workers do and it’s not cool or really ok to smoke in polite company anymore.

I FINALLY quit a year ago last August. So glad I did.

23 ( +28 / -5 )

I FINALLY quit a year ago last August. So glad I did.

Congratulations. That’s awesome.

15 ( +20 / -5 )

first good news of the day! Will the indoor smoking bans now finally take effect?

17 ( +22 / -5 )

Tobacco no, vape yes.

-28 ( +1 / -29 )

Unfortunately,100% of J-gov find tax revenue from tobacco to be pleasant.

15 ( +17 / -2 )

Targeted surveys, influenced public opinions, high taxes, bans already almost everywhere in public buildings, restaurants or hotels, hate comments here and there…. What comes next, do you soon put us smokers into prisons or torture camps?

-17 ( +4 / -21 )

At last Japan is looking at this area, the tax on cigarettes should be heavily increased, smoking areas should be kept away from busy public areas, smokers are the minority, but get special treatment. It’s time Japan declared war on smokers..

8 ( +14 / -6 )

What comes next, do you soon put us smokers into prisons or torture camps?

People always complain and whine, according the corona virus by taking the vaccine and wear masks, about the responsibility for the society.

But when it comes to smoking, especially passive smoking, all these ~society responsibility whiners~ kept silent.

Nobody will complain if you smoke at home, in your own 4 walls. You can smoke there as much as you want.

I hope smoking will be banned in Izakayas too, because the smoke of cigarettes damaged the taste of my food.

But to give some credit to smokers, in my Mom and Pop's Izakaya, there is also one regular guest and his girlfriend, whose after shave or hair tonic, and the girl's perfume sometimes smells so strong that it also damages the taste of my food.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

What comes next, do you soon put us smokers into prisons or torture camps?

I’ll put it in the suggestion box. Smokers (and that used to be me too) have no “right” to impinge upon public health.

15 ( +17 / -2 )

What comes next, do you soon put us smokers into prisons or torture camps?

How about rehab?

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Rare for me to see one of these surveys and think “wow, I agree with 83% of respondents.”

People should be allowed to smoke if they want. But it stinks and passive smoking hurts others, so it should absolutely be done in isolation.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

It's about time, boy Japan has really come along ways. I remember riding the Shinkansen few years back and walking into a smoking car and it was the shock of life to see how people sit and inhale each others smoke. could not see the door on the opposite side of the car.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Without air we die. Breathing fresh untainted air we become more alive. Living in cities, we must put up with cancer inducing air from traffic exhausts. In the very early morning the air can be relatively fresh.

But no one living in a city can be free from poisonous air. Smokers

help the cancer-causing city air to be more poisonous and they get lung cancer quickly. Young girls who smoke become smoking mothers and smoking during pregnancy fills the unborn babies lungs with cancer causing air. Smoking is bad. Smoking is evil.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Most women hate tobacco smell....wanna do well with the ladies? quit the sticks.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Why only 80%? Tobacco smoke is 100% offensive. Who are these 20%?

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Hopefully this also constitutes iQos. Those things have an even more unpleasant scent than regular tobacco in my opinion and it is annoying to have to smell that while trying to enjoy my yakitori.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Next, convince people to stop burning rubbish in their backyards and rice husks in bonchi where the smoke hangs in the air for days.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Hard to fathom how people still smoke these days. It’s been know for a long time that it is not healthy. I find most people who smoke seem to think they are cool. They walk around without a care for other people at all.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

As a smoker, I find secondhand smoke unpleasant. I can’t imagine anyone thinking otherwise… smoker or not

in the last year or two it has taken its toll on me. I am considering quitting

6 ( +7 / -1 )

80%? It can’t be that high.

Why are there still so many smokers out there, stinking up the entry way to many a restaurant, bar or train station?

0 ( +5 / -5 )

They should ban veranda/balcony smokers.

It is just terrible in Tokyo!

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Why are there still so many…. Hard to fathom…

smoking is both highly physically and psychologically addictive. Many like me started in their early teens.

Contrary to popular belief, quitting is not an easy task.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

In 2007 I visited the LPD for talks with one of their committees. The meeting room which was used had ash trays on the table(s). And, yes, politicians were smoking during the meeting! I should say that these days smoking is not allowed in LDP meeting rooms as far as I know and have experienced.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It is funny. In the west, there is big movement to legalize cannabis but outlaw tobacco. Can someone explain the logic to me?

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Our local parks don't allow smoking, so the old geezers now come right to the edge of the park so their smoke blows inside. Sigh..

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Gave up smoking 13 years ago. I don't often smell tobacco smoke but when I do I find it unpleasant.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Can someone explain the logic to me?

That's because Americans love their drugs. Weed used to be considered a gateway drug, but ever since the tabacco industry got replaced with marijuana dispensaries, it's now considered safer than an aspirin pill.

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

I believe the right to smoke should be upheld, but it should be banned inside bars and restaurants. Without even touching on the health risks, it makes your hair and clothes stink.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Cannabis is a relatively harmful herb.

I would have said that but I have not smoked anything for 30 years. Drug-free life.

Today there are strains that are very powerful, too powerful.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

But to give some credit to smokers, in my Mom and Pop's Izakaya, there is also one regular guest and his girlfriend, whose after shave or hair tonic, and the girl's perfume sometimes smells so strong that it also damages the taste of my food.

How is that giving credit to smokers?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

In the west, there is big movement to legalize cannabis but outlaw tobacco. 

Not "in the west", but only in America and maybe Canada.

Can someone explain the logic to me?

It's political, let's leave it at that.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Close to $50.00 for a packet of 20 cigs in Australia now! Not sure what it costs now, but I recall in Japan it used to be about 500Y a pack so a slight discount...:)

maybe they could look at increasing the price to encourage people to stop smoking...

Used to hate going to restaurants in Japan as it was difficult to enjoy a meal with someone smoking lucky 7s at the next table!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Cannabis is a relatively harmful herb.

The science does not support the above statement.

A 2014 studyTrusted Source

 that explored the relationship between cannabis use and lung disease suggested that it was plausible that smoking cannabis could contribute to lung cancer,

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320984#What-are-the-health-risks-of-cannabis?

 

 involving animals have shown that THC may adversely affect the immune system by suppressing it.

https://www.healthline.com/health/effects-of-cannabis-on-body#Immune-system

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I have two neighbors that smoke. It just absolutely reeks sometimes outside.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Targeted surveys, influenced public opinions, high taxes, bans already almost everywhere in public buildings, restaurants or hotels, hate comments here and there…. What comes next, do you soon put us smokers into prisons or torture camps?

I think people should do it somewhere without bothering people.

The problem is everyone who lives in an apartment stinks up the places above them, even inside their own apartment.

Maybe go for a walk.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

NZ is the first nation to ban tobacco completely (for future generations).

Devils' advocate: Tobacco smoking is a millennia-old Native American tradition. Isn't this, in effect, discriminating against indigenous culture and upholding white supremacy?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Im surprised Jgov hasn't started a campaign to get more young people smoking considering their stake in JT

1 ( +2 / -1 )

While I hope people stop or reduce smoking, The actual percentage of adult smokers is around 33.20%.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

There is one useful property of tobacco - as an insecticide. Think of it like glyphosate - for pest control, not for human consumption. Smoking is just straight up bad for everyone's health, whether it's first, second or third hand (e.g when it soaks into fabrics that give off the noxious fumes).

On the other hand, cannabis has some proven medicinal benefits. But, big but, it is purposely being developed to have more and more powerful strains, which have more potential health risks. Of course, you can make similar arguments against smoking it as tobacco. Even if it doesn't contain tar, nicotine etc, I don't imagine it is exactly good for the lungs, but if it is managed as a controlled drug, we should be able to make the most of the medicinal benefits like relief of chronic pain. and for those who want to use it recreationally, there should be similar warnings to alcohol. It is dangerous if abused, overdosing is a risk, and some people are more vulnerable than others to unwanted effects like psychosis. Taking it and driving, or operating dangerous machinery that might harm others should be sanctioned just as drink driving is. Personally I think alcohol abuse is currently a bigger issue than cannabis abuse, but that might just be because alcohol is so widely socially accepted, so the scale of the abuse is way bigger e.g domestic violence, child abuse.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Nope.

That's not a convincing argument.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

name_not_importantToday  10:05 am JST

Japan is the final bastion of public smoking in the developed world.

developed world ?

stretching it

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Kenchi,

I too tried for years. I found the gum very helpful (although I prefer the mints available in the states).

I never tried the pharmacutical that blocks the chemical receptors in the brain (thus denying any satisfaction) but I hear good things and it might be worth a try.

For me, the idea of a life of COPD and degenerative lung disease (a really lusy way to die) helped me to overcome the cravings.

Best of luck to you. It isn't easy, but it can be done.

BTW, I gained 10 kg even though I also quite drinking. So you might want to be prepared for that.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

It's great to hear this, however why do so many family-oriented Japanese hotels still have the majority of rooms and floors as smoking? The rooms stink. The air is bad.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Under a revised health promotion law implemented in April 2020, people are banned from smoking indoors in principle at restaurants

Our local Indian restaurant doesn't seem to have got that memo. We stopped eating there because of the inevitable plonkers who would light up in the middle of a meal, gifting me a potential asthmatic attack and ruining our meal.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Finally! They should just say “if someone works there, no smoking is allowed” might be nice if they stopped putting fags behind the shop counter, and changed the packaging. May not help todays smokers but will nudge children into not taking the filthy, stinky, habit up.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

cigarettes of any kind/standard or electronic ones/ have to be taxed more as smoking kills not just smokers...

its about time that jgov will get more money from it.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

But when it comes to smoking, especially passive smoking, all these ~society responsibility whiners~ kept silent.

What basis do you have for this? people do complain very strongly about smoking in public places for the same reason, so is about drving while drinking and every other personal choice that puts others at a higher risk.

What is much more a sign of double standards is when people that defend their personal choices with invalid reasons (like "all scientist are wrong, but I am right because of my personal experience") suddenly no longer think those reasons can apply just because a smoker tries to use them to smoke where he pleases. At that point second hand smoke becomes undoubtedly harmful (and can be forbidden) because it has been proved so by science.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Hard to believe they still allow smoking in restaurants and bar's. Vancouver stopped that 22 year's ago. First because it's disgusting and for the safety of the staff that have to work in that environment every day.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

How is that giving credit to smokers?

Simple and easy:

Because both smells strong.

So by your definition a sweaty salaryman sitting next to you is also "giving credit to smokers"?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

At last Japan is looking at this area, the tax on cigarettes should be heavily increased, smoking areas should be kept away from busy public areas, smokers are the minority, but get special treatment. It’s time Japan declared war on smokers.

As much as I agree with you, one could debate that the consumption of alcohol causes more societal problems, from accidents to arguments to health incidents. I am both an alcoholic and ex-smoker. And I am so glad I gave up both. But I do find it a bit hypocritical of people declaring war on smokers because they are in the minority, while completely ignoring alcohol consumption.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Not too concerned about the smell except when it lingers on my clothes and makes one’s hair smell yucky.

I recall when I was little, nanny used to always be smoking, she stank to Hugh heaven. These days it would be illegal for her to do so.

Smokers should be encouraged to vape or use E Cigs instead, in the UK the NHS do that and it’s far less harmful and ruddy well less smelly too.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

BTW, I gained 10 kg even though I also quite drinking. So you might want to be prepared for that.

Wow! You managed to quit both! Hat off to you.

On a lighter note, I used to have a mug that said " I quit smoking. I quit drinking. I quit sex. Bury me"

2 ( +2 / -0 )

maxjapank

First you don't have to drink someone's drink if they're sitting beside you in a restaurant, like you have to breathe in someone's smoke. I'm sure you wouldn't like it if you were in a pool and someone used it as a toilet, it's the same thing. But congratulations for you quitting alcohol and cigarettes.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Smoke from smokers is not unpleasant.

Smoke from smokers is horrid. It is kills the smoker. Slowly.

It kills others near him. Slowly.

It kills unborn babies in the womb. Quickly.

lt kills more people than industrial smoke.

It is evil. Cigarette manufacturers should stop

manufacturing cigarettes and switch to manufacturing

toilet paper.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

While Japan still has a long way to go in kicking the tobacco habit, it's far better than when I arrived here in the late 90s.

Cigarettes were a mere 260 yen a pack.

Lots of cinemas reeked of smoke - in a way, they were 4D cinemas ahead of their time in that when someone lit up on screen, it was like you were right there in the film. Who said Japanese cinemas were backward flea houses?

Maccas and Doutor had a couple of token non-smoking tables down the back that you'd have to crawl under a toxic cloud to reach, safe in the knowledge you'd be protected by a forcefield that smoke couldn't transcend once seated.

Just walking down the street would subject you to traffic fumes plus an eyeful of flying ash from someone's flailing ciggie.

And going out at night - you may as well have been a smoker if you weren't, as there was nowhere smoke-free.

It was the best of times...

Like most here, I'm glad smoking is well and truly on the decline. I think Starbucks may have had something to do with this - the smoke-free shops were a refuge for those of us who'd tolerate their overpriced beverages for some clean air. As many places lost business to them, those other cafes voluntarily went smoke-free to retain customers and helped to spark something of a cascade.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

runner3

For sure, I don't have to drink someone else's drink. But I do have to smell alcohol which can reek just as bad as smoking. And I do have to share the roads with potential DUIs. Thankfully, as I don't go out drinking anymore, I don't have to deal with belligerent drunks anymore. But supposedly my wife's grandfather was a nightmare in the home when he was alive. I mean I was no saint either. I've made many amends for my past.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Anyone remember when the Shinkansen had smoking cars? When you opened the door to pass through that car you could only see about 8 rows deep the smoke was so thick.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

As an ex smoker that finally managed to quit the evil weed about 12 years ago, I can't stand the smell of tobacco smoke anymore. It makes me feel physically sick. Consequently, I don't spend any of my time or money anywhere that cigarette smoking is allowed. Japan should follow Europe and ban all indoor smoking in public spaces.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Unpleasant? Actually, smoking smell is not bad...and that is deliberately planned by Big JT. What is unpleasant is the hundreds of chemicals and cancer causing products in the smoke!!!!! It should all be banished. Pity the workers in bars and restaurants who must inhale this...and decades later come down with cancers. Why does Japan let itself be held hostage by drug addicts?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

RedeWhiteBlue It is funny. In the west, there is big movement to legalize cannabis but outlaw tobacco. Can someone explain the logic to me?

Edibles. Both tobacco and smoking are going out of fashion.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

For sure, I don't have to drink someone else's drink. But I do have to smell alcohol which can reek just as bad as smoking.

By far, by a very long shot the reek of cigarettes does not compare to the smell of someone ingesting alcohol. Not to mention, consuming alcohol does not make an establishment smell or make the ceiling/walls go yellow.

And I do have to share the roads with potential DUIs.

Actually, the legal percentage of alcohol for driving in Japan is 0.

Can we please ban smoking from indoor establishments already?

I seriously cannot begin to comprehend how it is illegal to smoke outdoors on the street (in some cities), but totally fine indoors. Makes zero sense.

Oh Japan. You will forever be, the land of ironies.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Of course no one likes smoking poisonous fumes in their lungs other than suicidal smokers themselves.

Japan is making progress but it is way too slow. The tax on tobacco needs to be quintupled to start. The only way to get smokers to stop is to make tobacco more expensive. They are clearly illogical as they know they are killing themselves so only the pocketbook makes a difference to them. When enlightened California went smoke free deduces ago they increased the tax and smokers quit in large numbers. Saved their pathetic lives the State did.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Why don’t they just raise a pack of smokes to ¥5000 a piece and tax the heck out of it?

win win win for everyone.

Either the smokers will quit because it’s too much, start stealing them and go to jail, or just lose a lot more money, quicker.

no one loses!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

83% of the 3000 polled.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

No, Japan will be a smokers haven thanks to the almighty JT for a long time to come people. So don’t get your hopes up. Enjoying a nice relaxing Hope Short as I type this in one of my favorite Izakaya with a cold beer and some sticks. God I love this country! Long live JT.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Yes! The POWER of social messaging turning a former ubiquitous behavior into a noxious reaction to that behavior by emphasizing TOXICITY. Now, if another message could be piggybacked on that success that diesel exhaust is even MORE toxic and carcinogenic than cigarette (campfire, incense, any 'vegetable') smoke, a true social service would be performed. But we would expect the same duplicitous pushback from Big Petro that came from Big Tobacco for so many years. And Alcohol remains untouchable albeit statistically the most toxic substance in the Human menu even counting all of the other organic toxins Humans accumulate from so many sources both direct and indirect. War, of course, is Mankind's greatest toxicity but, like Alcohol, and unlike Tobacco, is untouchable and our worst addiction.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Smoking in public in a non designated area is supposed to be a crime.

Walking down the street or on a bicycle.

Tobacco smokers are extremely inconsiderate and obviously not health conscious.

Hard to look intelligent or sophisticated whilst smoking Tobacco.

Smoking in the entrance to the supermarket is infuriating

Truly a disgusting habit !

It's actually better situation than it used to be tho.

But yeah- Japan smells like a big disgusting ash tray almost everywhere you go

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

diesel exhaust is even MORE toxic and carcinogenic than cigarette (campfire, incense, any 'vegetable') smoke,

This statement is factually incorrect.

Tobacco smoke is more toxic due to the hundreds of chemicals involved.

And the second hand smoke and contaminated areas.

And then there's the manufacturing aspect to consider the environmental impact and cigarette buts everywhere

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The only way to get smokers to stop is to make tobacco more expensive.

Tobacco smoking is poisonous and highly addictive and kills people regularly.

Second hand smoking kills innocent people.

It should be a crime to smoke anywhere !

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Rodney

Why only 80%? Tobacco smoke is 100% offensive. Who are these 20%?

Er, presumably the roughly 20% of Japan adults who are regular smokers?

TT

https://www.smokefreeworld.org/health-science-research-2/health-science-technology-agenda/data-analytics/global-state-of-smoking-landscape/state-smoking-japan/

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Well acording to a Google search i just did -

By Japanese law the ministry of finance is required to own a minimum of one-third of JAPAN TOBACCO inc .

However currently the finance ministry owns over 33% of JAPAN TOBACCO inc

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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