Our policy on standardised packaging for tobacco

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Get in touch with our policy team to find out more information about our work and our policies.

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The #QuitforCovid campaign launched in early 2020 in response to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. COVID-19 is a new illness caused by a virus that can affect people’s lungs and airways. Symptoms of COVID-19 include a cough, a high temperature and shortness of breath. There are some groups of people who may be more at risk of serious illness if they catch coronavirus, including older people, people with long term health conditions and people who are immunosuppressed. Emerging evidence suggests people who smoke are at higher risk of severe COVID-19 infection.

If you or someone you know wants to stop smoking, there are a range of tools available to support you. Visit the NHS Smokefree website to find out more.

On May 2016, standardised tobacco packaging was introduced across the UK. Following the removal of point of sale tobacco displays from shops, these measures will help end misleading tobacco marketing.

After a long campaign standardised packaging was introduced across the UK from May 2016. Two-thirds of people who smoke start by the age of 18 - the beginning of an addiction that will kill up to 2 in 3 long-term users. Standardised packaging of tobacco products will protect children from a deadly addiction and save lives. We are currently investing in research to evaluate the impact of standardised packaging in the UK.

Research shows that standard packs reduce the appeal of tobacco products to children and help demonstrate the realities of smoking by increasing the prominence of graphic health warnings. The introduction of standardised packaging in May 2016 follows the removal of point of sale tobacco displays from all shops in April 2015. Tobacco displays reinforce the social norms of smoking among young people.

Image of whats changing on cigarette packs

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