Hundreds of thousands support plain packs!

Friday, 10 August 2012  at 10:32

Over 200,000 people in the UK have backed a move to place tobacco products in plain packaging in an attempt to reduce the 340,000 children who try smoking each year in the UK.

Plain packaging would mean that all tobacco packaging will be required to look the same and all brand names would have to be written in a standard typeface, colour and size. All other trademarks, logos, colour schemes and graphics would be banned.

Evidence indicates that plain packaging could make tobacco look less attractive to children; help make the health warnings stand out more; and may even stop children believing that some tobacco brands are less harmful than others.

Smokefree South West, which was set up to tackle smoking issues in the region, led the national initiative with support from major national charities and health organisations. A dedicated website www.plainpacksprotect.co.uk was set up to provide information for the public and encourage them to sign up and support the campaign.

Fiona Andrews, Director of Smokefree South West said:
‘It is a real credit to everyone that they have supported a measure that could help move cigarettes out of glamorous, glitzy and expensively designed boxes into toned down simple packaging that puts across the real health risks of smoking.

‘All those people who have given their support have played a key role in raising the profile of this vital issue that could help protect our children for years to come.

‘I am in no doubt that these packs, some the shaped like lipsticks or ipods, are used to entice the next generation of smokers to replace the 100,000 people who die from diseases caused by smoking every year in the UK. The positive response we have seen to this campaign shows that this concerns smokers and non-smokers, young and old, uncles and aunties, parents and grandparents.’

There is strong public support for the introduction of plain, standardised packaging. A recent poll by YouGov found that 63% of adults in the South West supported plain packaging while just 12% opposed the measure. Even among smokers, for every five who oppose plain packaging, there are seven who support it.

Support has come from across the area including cross- party support from South West MPs and major health bodies. All responses received have been submitted to the Government consultation that closed August 10th. All of the responses and supporting evidence will be evaluated before any decision is made.

Australia has already moved to introduce plain packaging, which becomes law in December this year.  New Zealand has agreed in principal to the introduction of plain packaging and has committed to running a public consultation with other countries watching closely.
To find out more about plain packaging visit www.plainpacksprotect.co.uk
* 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