Ban on menthol flavoured cigarettes comes into effect

Public health campaigners welcome new legislation prohibiting the sale of menthol flavoured tobacco products.

A ban on the sale of menthol flavoured cigarettes and tobacco products comes into effect today.

New legislation, which stems from the EU Products Directive 2014, has been transposed into UK law.

The ban will remain in place when the transition period for the UK leaving the European Union comes to an end on December 31.

Public health campaigners have welcomed the move.

Sheila Duffy, chief executive of the independent charity Action on Smoking and Health (Scotland), said: “We hope this will help drive down youth smoking rates in Scotland where 12%of 15-year-olds and 4% percent of 13-year-olds are smoking either regularly or occasionally.

“However, menthol flavoured cigarillos are not included in this legislation and tobacco manufacturers are already developing new products to circumvent the ban – like menthol flavoured filters that can be used with roll your own tobacco – so governments should consider further legislation to close these loopholes,” she added.

The charity says evidence suggests that menthol – which makes the experience of smoking less harsh  – may help establish smoking among young people and reduces the likelihood of quitting.  

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