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Public health body backs call for tobacco-display ban

The Local/rm · 22 Mar 2011, 14:04

Published: 22 Mar 2011 14:04 GMT+01:00

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Government parties are however resisting the move due to lack of available data connecting a ban with a decrease in tobacco sales.

Eva Olofsson, of the Left Party, is one of the advocates for a ban.

“The aim is to get less people overall to smoke and less children and young people to start smoking. To achieve that, sales must decrease. This might be one way to tackle that,“ she said to Sveriges Radio (SR).

The UK Health Department decided earlier this month to ban tobacco displays from large stores in England from April 2012, with smaller shops following suit by 2015 at the latest.

Scotland and Northern Ireland are well on their way towards banning displays of tobacco. In Europe, it is already implemented in Ireland, Finland, Norway and Iceland.

Across the globe countries like Australia, Canada, Thailand and the republic of Trinidad and Tobago have also decided to ban the displays.

However, the Swedish government parties aren't convinced.

According to Ulrik Lindgren of the ministry of health and social affairs, this is due to the lack of data supporting a connection between a ban and a decrease in tobacco sales.

According to Sveriges Radio, tobacco companies are of the same opinion.

Ulrika Dennerborg, of Philip Morris Sweden, told SR that sales figures from Norway where a ban is implemented, give no indication of a decrease in sales.

“This measure has no proven effect, but what it does achieve is remove any chance to compete on the market,” she told SR.

The Swedish National Institute of Public Health (Folkhälsoinstitutet) supports the ban on tobacco displays.

Story continues below…

According to the institute, the number of smokers in Sweden today is low by international standards, with 13 percent of Swedish women and 11 percent of men smoking on a daily basis.

But despite these figures, the total tobacco usage in Sweden is till significant, mainly due to the Swedes’ moist snuff (snus) habits.

19 percent of Swedish men and 4 percent of Swedish women use snuff every day.

Since the beginning of 2000 the number of adult tobacco users has decreased every year, according to institute figures, but the number of young users has remained unchanged. Among boys, tobacco use has in fact increased.

The Local/rm (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

22:35 March 22, 2011 by Rolle
Oh yeah, remove snus' display at my local kiosk and i will no loger remember which brand i buy. Maybe i'll buy some gum instead... This is one of the most idiotic things i've ever read, even by Folkhälsoinstitutet standards
06:56 March 23, 2011 by Hauhr
"The aim is to get less people overall to smoke and less children and young people to start smoking. To achieve that, sales must decrease. This might be one way to tackle that,"

If there is even the tiniest chance that this move might lessen the number of young people who get into smoking then we have an obligation to back this. Even the adult smokers with their silly arguments in favour of smoking must agree that there can be no downside to lowering the number of kids who turn from non-smokers into smokers.
09:38 March 23, 2011 by wenddiver
Make it a mandatory class in school and nobody would smoke. Require everybody to smoke at all times and give non-smokers tickets for not complying and within the year nobody will smoke.

Tell children it is a vegtable.
10:38 March 23, 2011 by BrittInSweden
Isn't snuff and snus different things?

Snuff you sniff and snus goes in your mouth.
00:21 May 31, 2011 by darkrealm
The rise in snus tax at the end of the year will make cigarettes cheaper than snus more people will smoke.
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