translation agency

Agence France-Presse
Poland's condom market shrinks for first time: data

January 17, 2012

Warsaw, Jan 17, 2012 (AFP) - Sales of condoms and birth control in Poland
shrank by 10 percent and 3.2 percent respectively over a year as of October
2011, the first such drop on record, fresh market surveys showed Tuesday.

Further studies of the data compiled by the Nielsen and IMS Health
pharmaceutical market analysts due out in February are expected to pinpoint
the causes behind this unprecedented contraction in the contraceptives sector.

But leading Polish sexologists already have theories on the reasons behind
the shrinking condom market in this devoutly Catholic European Union country
of 38 million, and none of them have to do with Church teachings forbidding
contraception.

"Youngsters choose condoms more often and there are fewer and fewer of
these youngsters, so (condom) producers are feeling it," Professor Zbigniew
Izdebski said, quoted by Poland's Puls Biznesu daily.

The fact that Polish health authorities have not launched any high profile
public HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention campaigns in recent years could also
contribute to the decline in condom sales, Izdebski observed.

Meanwhile, fellow sexologist Professor Zbigniew Lew-Starowicz suggested
that "Poles are choosing other forms of sex more and more often and perhaps
this is the reason behind the decline of its traditional form."

But Professor Aleksandra Jodlko pinned the drop in sales squarely on the
dampened mood and stresses caused by tough economic times.




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