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FRESH welcome end of eye-catching tobacco displays in large shops

The end of tobacco displays in all large shops in England will help protect more children in the North East from taking up smoking, according to FRESH.


New laws on point of sale legislation come into force this Friday (6 April). This will require all large shops across the country to cover tobacco displays and hide from view the wide selection of colourful tobacco brands currently on the market.


Ailsa Rutter, director of FRESH, said: “If you walk into any shop across the country currently, you can’t help but notice the highly colourful tobacco displays designed to catch the eye and attract customers. These are often directly behind sweet counters, catching the eye of children.


“In the North East, the average age that people start smoking is just 15 but some start as young as nine years old. Smoking is a childhood addiction and that is why making cigarettes less visible to young people is a positive move forward in reducing tobacco promotion.”


But she added: “This is a welcome step but it will not stop the tobacco companies from using the pack itself to lure new customers – who are usually young people - with pastel colours, holograms and fancy designs.


“This is why Australia is introducing plain, standardised packaging on tobacco products later this year with more noticeable health warnings to reduce the attractiveness to young people and also reduce misleading information. I’d urge as many people to support this when our Government launches a consultation in the Spring.&%