LOTHIANS-BASED Labour MEP David Martin is backing calls for the UK government to introduce so-called plain packaging for cigarettes as soon as possible.
He said tobacco advertising had already been banned from billboards, TV, films, newspapers, radio, magazines, racing cars, sportswear and at the point of sale. Plain packaging would simply complete the ban, he argued.
Mr Martin said: “Over the past few years the industry has been particularly targeting young women with super-slim, feminine packets which look more like boxes for lipstick or perfume than for a dangerous and addictive drug.
“Standardising packs would end this practice. Two-thirds of smokers started smoking before they were 18 and 83 per cent started before they were 20.
“Young people who haven’t yet tried tobacco are not drawn to it by a physical addiction. Instead they are attracted to tobacco solely by the image and the idea of smoking.”