While most forms of tobacco advertising and promotion in the UK are banned, the tobacco industry has continued to promote its products through packaging and “below the line” marketing.
Tobacco packaging has become one of the tobacco industry’s leading promotional tools. Research suggests that standardised packaging would increase the impact of health warnings, reduce false and misleading messages that one type of cigarette is less harmful than another, and reduce the attractiveness of smoking to young people.ASH Briefing on Standardised Tobacco Packaging
Health policy is largely formulated and implemented by the devolved administrations of each of the member countries of the United Kingdom. However, as tobacco falls within the remit of a number of different government departments: e.g. Treasury, Business, HMRC as well as Health, tobacco control policy is partly determined at UK-wide level and partly by the devolved administrations. The four nations of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have responsibility for their own smoking cessation and health education campaigns while UK-wide policy and law applies to taxation, smuggling, advertising, and consumer protection issues such as the provision of health warnings on tobacco packaging. Some of these measures are determined by European Union legislation.UK Tobacco Control Policy and Expenditure: An overview