Illicit tobacco

Sheila Duffy, chief executive of Ash Scotland, has once again distorted the situation in Australia where standardised packaging for tobacco products has been introduced.

In her article, “Beware of Big Tobacco’s plain pack puffery” (Friends of The Scotsman, 22 July), she claims the introduction has been a success with no dire consequences as predicted by those against the measure.

I am afraid this is totally incorrect. In Australia illicit trade has risen considerably so that now one in seven cigarettes smoked are illicit – 14.3 per cent of the total market.

Sign up to our Opinion newsletter

Sign up to our Opinion newsletter

And what Ash fails to understand is the illicit trade is a particular threat to young children who can more easily access tobacco through this illegal distribution and “back street” selling.

llicit trade and Ash’s desire to tax tobacco virtually out of existence will play directly into the hands of the criminals.

Mike Ridgway

Consumer Packaging 
Manufacturers Alliance

lkley, West Yorkshire