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More Young Adults Smoke Occasionally in Norway

Since 1973, Norwegians have been asked about their smoking habits every year. Last year, almost zero per cent of young adults aged 16 to 24 reported smoking daily, but the proportion of occasional smokers has never been higher, according to the report Tobacco in Norway from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) (link in Norwegian).

The report shows that 19 per cent of men and 13 per cent of women say they smoke occasionally.

“It is reasonable to assume that this distribution to some extent reflects the fact that occasional smoking is considered more acceptable than daily smoking,” Tord Finne Vedøy, a researcher at NIPH, says.

For adults aged 16 to 74, the proportion of occasional smokers has remained stable at around 10 per cent until 2010 – and has been the same for women and men. Over the past decade, it appears that the proportion of occasional smokers has decreased somewhat, according to NIPH. The proportion of regular smokers for adults in this age group was 15 per cent last year.

Snus, which for a long time was a product used almost exclusively by men, has become popular among women in recent years. Last year, 20 per cent of adult men aged 16–74 reported using snus daily, while a further five per cent used snus occasionally. For women, the corresponding proportions were eight and three per cent.

The number of regular snus users (daily or occasional) aged 16–74 is estimated to be just over 500,000 men and 200,000 women. From the summer of 2021 to the summer of 2022, they used an average of 4.6 kilos of snus each.

In 2022, the proportion of young men (16 to 24 years) who use snus daily was around 25 per cent, while the proportion of young women was 15 per cent.

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