Tobacco companies have a problem. Adults rarely start smoking. Tobacco companies rely on children taking up smoking to keep their profits rolling in. Almost all new smokers are under 18, and the average age people start to smoke in New Zealand is 14 years of age.
Nearly a quarter (23%) of youth smokers start before they turn 10. These young people are what the tobacco industry calls its “replacement smokers”, replacing the nearly 5,000 smokers who die each year form tobacco related illnesses. We need to protect our children from tobacco marketing so that our children don’t get dragged into the vicious cycle of smoking.
The Cancer Society of New Zealand together with supporting organisations, are calling for a total ban on the display of cigarettes and other tobacco products in petrol stations, shops and other retail outlets where cigarettes are sold.
Surveys show that there is extremely strong levels of support for a ban on tobacco displays amongst New Zealanders. Over two-thirds of non-smokers (68%) support a ban on tobacco displays. (1) In addition smokers are well and truly behind a ban on tobacco displays. The majority (60%) of NZ smokers support a ban on tobacco displays. (7)