The Pantone 448C, or opaque couché, commonly described as ‘death’, ‘dirty’, ‘tar’ or even ‘baby’s poo’ was voted as the world’s ugliest colour in an Australian research and marketing project aimed at discouraging people from smoking.
In 2012, the Australian government required all cigarette packaging to be uniformed in a single colour. They had wanted to find the most unappealing colour for the packaging in the hopes that people would be less tempted to buy them.
The study asked more than 1,000 smokers, aged 16 to 64, which colour they found most visually offensive and the brownish green longkang water hue came out top.
The new colour was eventually adopted for all tobacco packaging along with graphic health warnings. Other countries like the UK, Ireland and France have followed suit using the same murky colour on cigarette packaging.
In an interview with British newspaper The Guardian, Pantone Colour Institute’s executive director Leatrice Eiseman said “we consider all colours equally,” adding that there was “no such thing as the ugliest colour.”
Well, do you find it ugly?
Over in Singapore, shops will be banned from displaying tobacco products after changes to the Tobacco (Control of Advertisement and Sale) Bill were passed in March last year.
The ban will apply to all tobacco products including cigars, beedies and ang hoon (loose tabacco leaves). Under the new rules, general tobacco retailers will be required to use storage devices to keep products out of sight from the public at all times.