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By Nazmi Bilir, Banu Çakir, Elif Dagli, Toker Ergüder and Zeynep Önder

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8. Besides high rates of tobacco production, Turkey is among the top 10 tobacco-consuming countries in the world. In 2001, Turkey consumed 2% of tobacco worldwide and 14% in the WHO European Region. 9 billion were consumed. 9. 5%). In contrast to most developed countries, smoking is more prevalent among educated groups in Turkey. Nearly half (53%) of secondary school graduates smoke whereas only 13% of illiterate people smoke. In addition to high tobacco consumption among adults, a significant number of smokers show addictive behaviour.

Producer, area and payment status regarding alternative crops for tobacco project, Turkey, 2002–2007 Year 2002–2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 Total No. of producers 4 769 1 547 433 48 41 6 841 Area (decares) Payment (US$) 22 690 2 505 4 764 207 193 30 361 1 815 236 200 458 381 157 16 554 15 485 2 428 613 Source: based on data from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs. As a result of the implementation of the project in 2002, of the 22 690 decares of agricultural land retrieved from tobacco cultivation, 87% was allocated to wheat, 6% to barley, 5% to lentils and the remainder to vegetables and animal feed crops.

Nevertheless, smoking is quite common among adolescents and the peer effect in starting to smoke is of crucial importance in this age group. In 2006, Akpinar and colleagues (22) investigated smoking prevalence and its determinants among fourth- and fifth-year students at Cukurova University in Southern Turkey. 7%). The smoking behaviour of best friends was the most powerful determinant for smoking consistently across age groups. Best friends’ attitudes towards smoking and family members’ smoking behaviour were also important determinants for smoking.

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