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Preparation begins for the ban on branded tobacco

Although there have been rumours in the industry regarding when the plain packaging requirements will come into practice, it is only now that retailers are beginning to get the guidance and support they need.

As of May 2016, all production of branded cigarettes and roll your own (RYO) tobacco will stop. This ban will come into full effect a year later in May 2017 when it will become the legal requirement for retailers to stock and sell only ‘standardised’ packs.

Tobacco manufacturer Imperial and the global giant JTI are amongst the companies looking to help and support retailers. Imperial has recently launched it’s ‘Partnering for success’ initiative which is designed to guide retailers through the packaging legislation, whilst JTI has produced a downloadable pdf outlining key tips and advice.

Such help seems to have come at the perfect time; Anjali Karpal of Essential Convenience in Horsham notes that facts and timelines are necessary to help retailers plan and furthermore that the promise of help and support is a good thing. Sally Croft of Croft Stores near Silverstone admits that the biggest hurdle for her will be the ban on smaller pack sizes which she notes will require extra planning and further adjustments from retailers.

There is no doubt, the changes to how cigarettes are packaged will cause a significant adjustment and massively impact how the tobacco category is managed. In this sense it seems appropriate that the industry should start planning and preparing as soon as possible, as retailer Manny Patel notes “This has to be taken seriously”.

Source: Convenience Store >>

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