Jack Quann
Jack Quann

14.02 19 May 2020


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A ban on the sale of menthol flavoured cigarettes and tobacco kicks in from Wednesday.

The Government says the purpose of the ban is to ensure that cigarette and tobacco products for sale can no longer "include ingredients that would make smoking more palatable or make it easier for someone to start smoking by masking the taste of tobacco."

The process to ban the products has taken several years.

The four year lead-in time was to allow smokers that use menthol products time to switch to others.

The prohibition is contained in a European Union regulation from 2016.

Health Minister Simon Harris has welcomed the ban.

He said: "Smoking is an addictive and lethal habit.

"The pleasant taste of menthol masks the true taste of tobacco and might attract first time smokers or keep people smoking who might wish to quit.

"The COVID-19 pandemic has made it more important than ever to quit."

Last week, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said that a review of studies by public health experts found that smokers are more likely to develop severe disease with COVID-19, compared to non-smokers.

It also warned that tobacco is a major risk factor for non-communicable diseases and these conditions increase the risk of developing severe illness when affected by COVID-19.

"I urge everyone who is thinking about quitting to contact the HSE Quit service for support", Minister Harris added.

Main image: Cartons of cigarettes in the window of a grocery shop in New York in October 2012. Picture by: Richard B. Levine/SIPA USA/PA Images

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Ban Ireland Menthol Cigarettes Simon Harris Smokers Tobacco Tobacco Products

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