Plain cigarette packs review ends

 
Cigarettes on display The government wants smokers to give up their habit

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A UK-wide consultation on government plans to introduce mandatory plain packaging for tobacco will close later.

It was extended by a month to allow more people to respond after strong public interest in the issue.

The proposal could mean information about individual brands being removed from cigarette packets, with just the name and warnings visible.

Plain packaging is seen by campaigners as the next step in discouraging young people from taking up smoking.

It could mean every sign of individual brands, from their logo, colour or typeface, being replaced by standard packaging simply carrying warnings and the name of the cigarettes.

Packets are likely to be a dark olive green.

When he launched the consultation four months ago, Health Secretary Andrew Lansley said he wanted tobacco companies to have "no business" in the UK.

Challenged

It comes after a ban on tobacco displays in large shops started earlier this year. Smaller shops will have to follow suit by 2015.

Australia is currently the only country which has agreed to plain packaging, although the policy has been challenged in the courts by manufacturers.

Start Quote

Plain, standardised packaging of its lethal products frightens Big Tobacco silly because it threatens its profits”

End Quote Deborah Arnott Ash

Research published there has suggested that cigarette packets have increasingly become an important marketing tool as restrictions on advertising and sponsorship have been brought in.

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of campaign group Ash, said: "Plain, standardised packaging of its lethal products frightens Big Tobacco silly because it threatens its profits.

"That's why the industry has devoted millions of pounds to put pressure on politicians and prevent the government from going ahead with this measure."

But Simon Clark, director of Forest, a lobby group funded by the tobacco industry, said: "There is no evidence that standardised packaging will have any health benefits.

"Advocates base their arguments not on facts but on speculation."

The government said it would make a decision when the responses to the consultation had been considered.

 

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  • rate this
    -2

    Comment number 532.

    We just need to ban smoking full stop.

    As an astmatic, I was so happy when the smoking ban came in about 5 years go. It meant I finally didn't have to suffer any dirty, smelly smokers whilst having a drink.

    Bliss.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 531.

    It makes put something in a plain packet and then hide it behind a shutter, doesn't it?

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 530.

    Recent research shows many times more people die/have poor health outcomes because of obesity/fundamental lack of exercise, the anti-smoking/drinking Gestapo need to be closed down as they have done the job raising profile on smoking/drinking issues.

    Time, effort, money and legislative time needs to be focused in on better nutrition and exercise, as this affects orders of magnitude more people

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 529.

    524. - Fred Bloggs
    There is research done to show plain packaging discourages the appeal in young people (example posted in a previous post). Making it more illicit and 'dodgy' is your words, not mine.

  • rate this
    +7

    Comment number 528.

    No-one's saying plain packaging will make smokers give up. Nor are they saying it will stop *every* potential smoker from taking it up. It's just another step towards changing social norms concerning smoking, and reducing its appeal among those who are young and impressionable. If plain packaging gives young people one less reason to start smoking, I'm all for it.

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 527.

    This is completely off topic but it's confusing/annoying me greatly.
    The cost of smoking to the NHS is less than the tax revenue raised by tobacco tax. This is indisputable & the evidence can be found on Google in ten minutes - on ASH's own website in fact.

    So why do people keep arguing the opposite? You're WRONG.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 526.

    521.Gatesheadsteve3


    Smoking is illegal in enclosed public places. If they are private enclosed places then you have chosen to be there. Who's fault is that?

    Cars in outside locations produce a constant smog of toxins in quantities that could only be matched by a smoker aiming for a nicotine overdose and blowing the smoke directly into your mouth.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 525.

    Quite amused by the "you can't comment if you drive a car" argument. Therefore only smokers who don't drive or get driven have this as a valid comeback. I don't like the smell of car fumes, but they're preferable to someone smoking in front of me in a crowd. Not against the personal choice of smoking, just want smokers to be considerate.

    However, what's this got to do with packaging though?!!

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 524.

    @515.Gatesheadsteve3

    "..is to help prevent young people from smoking in the first place. It's not specifically aimed at adults currently smoking. Why do you think that would be nonsense?"

    The question is why do you and ASH think that making something more banned, more illicit, more 'dodgy', more hidden away, will discourage children?

    Clue: ASH are not stupid and don't think that.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 523.

    Simple plain packaging makes faking it a lot easier. We may come up against a new problem of cheap counterfeit cigarettes sold (the new lower price may be more appealing to the youngsters than current colourful packaging!)

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 522.

    @504 There was a company in Luxembourg a few years ago that sold cigarettes called 'Death' in a black packet with a skull & crossbones on it.

    They got banned in the end for avoiding import duty.

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 521.

    519. xyriach
    "And before you come back with air quality arguments, unless you're going to ban cars there's no weight to them."
    I've never been stuck in an enlosed space with a car, but have plenty of times with smokers. It's your car argument that has no weight to it!

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 520.

    @513.Paramedic-Physio

    "Go into your corner shop and look at a pack of Lambert and Butler, you can't seriously say thats not aimed at kids?"

    Oh really? I can't? Watch me.

    a) They are going to be hidden from sight behind wooden doors.

    b) Do you know how large a fine a corner shop would have to pay if caught selling to kids?

    c) Trading standards send out underage kids to test shops.

  • rate this
    +6

    Comment number 519.

    @517

    Smoking does not generate litter, people generate litter. Most public waste bins have ashtrays of sorts attached to them, failing that most pubs\resturants will have something outside.

    Littering is illegal. Smoking is not.

    And before you come back with air quality arguments, unless you're going to ban cars there's no weight to them.

  • rate this
    +7

    Comment number 518.

    I was shocked that I couldn't find anywhere in the Olympic park to buy a packet of fags to go with my Coke and Big Mac

  • rate this
    -6

    Comment number 517.

    following from my earlier comment (512) i think smoking should be banned in all public places if only to reduce the amount of litter smoking generates.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 516.

    I have just come back from lunch. I was so seduced by the pretty colours on their packets that I was compelled to buy cigarettes.

    I can only imagine that the teenagers I passed on the way back to work who were also smoking were equally seduced by the packaging.

    I beg the government to do something about this multicoloured blight on our society!

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 515.

    511 - Red_Robin
    The plain packaging is to help prevent young people from smoking in the first place. It's not specifically aimed at adults currently smoking. Why do you think that would be nonsense?

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 514.

    So all the packaging will be the same? Haven't we just passed law saying they have to be hidden from view in shops?
    What a waste of time and resources. I wonder how much this has cost so far.... Good job smokers are paying so much in taxes to cover the cost!

  • rate this
    -3

    Comment number 513.

    Its not about people who are smoking, Evidence shows that most of you will suffer with COPD and die early. There will be a few who will live to 90 and say it never did them any harm, but you don't know that until you are 90. This policy is to stop the next generation from starting. Go into your corner shop and look at a pack of Lambert and Butler, you can't seriously say thats not aimed at kids?

 

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