Tobacco Use in Canada
Patterns and Trends - 2014 Edition



In 2012, among Canadian adults age 15 and older:

  • 16.1% of Canadians (approximately 4.6 million) were current smokers.

    • The majority of smokers reported smoking daily (11.9% daily/4.3% non-daily prevalence).

    • The decline in smoking prevalence observed over the past decade appears to have slowed.

    • Prevalence was higher among males (18.4%) than females (13.9%), for both daily and non-daily smoking.

    • Prevalence was highest among young adults (21.8% among those aged 25-34, and 20.3% among those aged 20-24), and generally declined with age. Prevalence was lowest among youth aged 15-19, at 10.9%.

    • Substantial differences in smoking prevalence by education level persisted over the last decade, despite declining prevalence. Prevalence among university graduates was markedly lower than in all other educational groups.

  • Daily smokers in Canada smoked an average of 15.0 cigarettes per day.

    • Average consumption has declined by more than 2 cigarettes per day since 1999.

    • Male daily smokers consumed approximately 4 more cigarettes per day than females.

    • Daily cigarette consumption did not differ significantly by education level.

  • There were significant differences between provinces in smoking prevalence, cigarette consumption, use of roll-your-own tobacco, and use of other tobacco products.

    • Smoking prevalence ranged from 13% in BC to nearly 20% in Newfoundland.

  • Cigars and cigarillos were the most popular tobacco products other than cigarettes: 4.1% of Canadians reported use in the past 30 days.

  • Roll-your-own tobacco was used at least sometimes by approximately one in ten smokers.

  • Many smokers made efforts to purchase cheaper cigarettes: nearly half had recently purchased discount brands, and approximately one in eight had purchased from a First Nations reserve. Very few smokers reported having purchased cigarettes that may have been smuggled.