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The display ban and plain packs

Wednesday, 4 April 2012  at 14:55


This week sees legislation coming into force that will require all supermarkets to place tobacco products out of sight. From 6 April 2012, customers in England will still be able to buy cigarettes in the normal way, but the ban - which was announced in 2008 - will mean cigarettes will have to be kept under the counter.

The Chief Medical Officer for England, Prof Dame Sally Davies, said: ''Ending tobacco displays in shops will protect young people from unsolicited promotions, helping them to resist the temptation to start smoking.
"It will also help and support adults who are trying to quit.''
Smoking kills more than 80,000 people in England every year, the Chief Medical Officer said.
The ban on displaying tobacco products is part of closing the loop on the last allowed forms of tobacco advertising which children are exposed to on a daily basis. Plain packaging of these products is very much designed to work hand in hand with their removal from the point of sale.

The brand a person chooses to smoke becomes part of their identity. Cigarette brands can be ‘badge products’ that serve as social cues to style, status, values and character. The tobacco industry is aware of this relationship:
“... if you smoke, a cigarette pack is one of the few things you use regularly that makes a statement about you. A cigarette pack is the only thing you take out of your pocket 20 times a day and lay out for everyone to see.”

(Speech notes from T.E. Sandefur, President of Brown and Williamson (a subsidiary of British American Tobacco), 1985. Bates no. 52001904/1918. Available at: http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/action/document/page?tid=noi24f00)

These measures are all part of jigsaw that is designed to reduce the 340,000 children who try smoking every year and limit the amount who then go on to have a lifetime of addiction.  By being consistent on banning the promotion of tobacco we can stop its glamorisation and appeal to our young people, show your support
* This number reflects the total amount of people who have signed up to support the plain packaging of tobacco products, via the Plain Packs Protect Partnership (logos below), British Heart Foundation and Cancer Research UK websites.
Supporters Smoke Free South West Ulster Cancer Foundation ash Ash Scotland Ash Wales British Heart Foundation Cancer Research UK Chartered Institute of Environmental Health Cut Films Faculty of Public Health Fresh Smoke Free North East National Heart Forum NCSCT BTS - Stop Smoking Champions The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation Royal College of Physicians TCC Tobacco Free Future Trading Standards Partnership South West Smoke Free Lincs - Promoting a tobacco free life