Plain, standard packs give kids one less reason to start smoking

So today the government has taken another significant step towards bringing in plain, standardised tobacco packs.

They have finally, after a perplexing delay, published what’s known as draft regulations – the nuts and bolts of how they plan to bring plain packs into shops and stores.

This is, obviously, very welcome news – especially as time is running out between now and next year’s general election, and because the evidence that standard packs work continues to build.

But there are still a few substantial hurdles to be overcome before we see the first tobacco products sold in unbranded packaging. These are:

  • A six week consultation on the draft regulations
  • The need to notify the European Union of the new proposals (which can take time to prepare).
  • The publication of a response to the consultation.
  • A commitment to actually go ahead with the legislation (the Government has so far only said it is ‘minded’ to do so).
  • A vote in Parliament to bring in so-called ‘enabling legislation’, which effectively brings the regulations into law.

It’s only when this vote is finally passed that we’ll truly relax and say, ‘job done’ – at least as far as standard packs are concerned.

Until then, we’ll be keeping up the pressure on Government, and watching out for interference and lobbying from the tobacco industry – an industry with a track record of deception, misinformation and obfuscation (as you’ll see if you watch this video or read this blog post).

And an industry which directly causes 43,000 cancer deaths in the UK each year.


PS Here’s another video that highlights who we’re up against. Please watch it (here’s the YouTube link) and share it: