Many smokers may not be aware that as of midnight last night, May 20th 2020, the sale of menthol-flavoured tobacco products was prohibited across the European Union.

This legislation will remain in place in the UK even after it exits the EU at the end of the year; this is because it was agreed back in 2016.

Evidence indicates that menthol increases the uptake of smoking in some of our young people. This is backed by a survey carried out in 2018 that found that one in eight 15-year-olds are smoking regularly.

Sheila Duffy, the chief executive of charity ASH Scotland, believes the new move will help to lower the number of youngsters who smoke.

She said: “This is a welcome measure as evidence suggests that menthol cigarettes – which mask some of the harsh effects of smoking – are particularly appealing to young people and can even reduce the likelihood of quitting. We hope this will help drive down youth smoking rates in Scotland where 12% of 15 year olds and 4% of 13 year olds are smoking either regularly or occasionally.”

Further information on this can found at the ASH Scotland website: https://www.ashscotland.org.uk/
 
Here in the Western Isles, your own ‘QUITYOURWAY’ Hebrides support service, is operating as normal during the COVID-19 pandemic.  You can call on 01851 701623 or 07919 290094 (both numbers have answering machines and the mobile number lets you text if you prefer). If staff are not available when you call, our advisors will get back to you as quickly as possible.
 
So if you or someone you know is a regular user of Menthol flavoured tobacco products, and is anxious about this ban, please call us for more information and support.

Anyone who is currently smoking is very welcome to call us for a chat about how we can help,  go on give us a call, we are here to help you at all times and you will be surprised how  much easier it is to quit than you think!