New laws are coming into place in May regarding smoking.
As of 20 May you will no longer be able to buy packs of 10, smaller packs of tobacco or menthols.
The laws were actually introduced last May; however, shops were given a year to get ready and to flog old stock.
The new laws:
- 10 decks aren't available for purchase anymore
- Packs of rolling tobacco weighing less than 30g will also be banned
- Menthols are being 'phased out'
- Flavoured tobacco, like cherry or vanilla, will be illegal
- Plain packaging is to be brought out - with graphic photos of the possible health implications from smoking
- The cheapest pack of cigarettes will cost £8.82
The laws are in place to help cut down on the number of smokers. Campaigners have said that phasing out menthols and flavoured tobacco will stop some younger people from picking up the habit.
Amanda Sandford from Action on Smoking and Health (Ash), told the Hull Daily Mail: "Cigarettes are already expensive and the price increase of cigarettes is a key factor in making people quit smoking.
"So by removing the packet of ten cigarettes this means people will have to find that extra money for a packet. It will hit poorer smokers harder, who are usually younger smokers.
"Paying £3 or £4 for a packet of 10 cigarettes at the moment might not seem so much to people and still leave them with change in their pockets.
"But when you have to spend £6/£7, even £9, people may think, 'Do I really need this packet?'"
She also believes that by using plain packaging, cigarettes will be 'less appealing'.
Vapers are also affected by new laws. Vendors will be restricted in the way they sell the various products.
From 20 May manufacturers must be aware that:
- Before they're sold, all e-cigarettes and e-liquids must be registered with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency
- The maximum capacity for an e-cigarette's refillable tank must be no bigger than 2ml
- E-liquids cannot be sold in quantities greater than 10ml
- Nicotine within E-liquid must not exceed 20mg/ml - unless registered as a medicine
- The packaging of E-liquids must be child-resistant and tamper evident
- Certain additives such as the stimulants caffeine and taurine or colourings are banned
- There are stricter labelling requirements
Anyone caught breaking these new rules could face two years in jail or a hefty fine.
Product seller CigElectric believes the changes of the maximum nicotine strength won't help cigarette smokers kick the habit. It also reckons a reduction of the maximum tank capacity will reduce the range of products.
"Expect a massive shake-up of the industry with smaller businesses shutting down, a massive reduction of product offerings and increased costs across the board," CigElectric wrote on its blog.
An undercover investigation found nine out of 10 British vape shops were breaking the industry code of conduct by selling products to non-smokers.
Guidelines within the Independent British Vape Trade Association (IBVTA) have been set to try to stop non-smokers from becoming addicted to nicotine.
But the investigation has found 87 percent of shops are selling products to people who have never smoked or vaped before.
The latest Public Health England review has found e-cigarettes are 95 percent safer than normal smoking.
The machines don't produce tar or carbon monoxide; instead they heat a solution which usually contains nicotine, a synthetic liquid and flavouring.
Anyone using the machines is strongly advised not to blow the vapour out of their nose, as the main chemical in e-cigarettes - propylene glycol (PG) - can potentially damage the nostrils.
Featured Image Credit: PA