The tobacco industry's been pretty angry about plain packaging. If brand labelling mostly works to reduce competition across brands and to help maintain customer loyalty, we'd expect that plain packaging mandates will lead to a shift towards discount brands and lower prices absent further excise hikes. And that's also what Clarke and Prentice expect.** You can simultaneously have a policy anger the tobacco industry while increasing smoking if it pushes current smokers to discount brands, reducing the average price they pay and consequently increasing consumption while decreasing industry profits. The policy that's the enemy of your enemy isn't necessarily your friend.And see here as well.
The "Scream Test" is a poor measure of whether a policy reduces harm: a policy that hurts some industry you don't like doesn't automatically make the world a better place.
Sinc Davidson reports that prices are dropping in Oz, despite excise increases, and that consumption's rising. Always-reliable Senator Nick Xenophon is consequently pushing for tobacco minimum pricing. A graph showing reduced tobacco expenditures has been making the rounds on Twitter; that can be entirely consistent with increased consumption where consumers are shifting to discount brands or if tobacco companies are dropping prices to maintain market share.
I suppose in full equilibrium, where the government raises excise sufficiently to get prices back up to ex ante levels, you'll have transformed some producer and consumer surplus into tax revenue, with excess burden in the form of reduced brand affiliative benefits for consumers who enjoy brand affiliation.
While I understand excise hikes for the next few years were scheduled a while back, I wouldn't be surprised if discounting and increased consumption led to excise increases greater than those previously scheduled.