Illegal tobacco roadshow events held in Stratford-upon-Avon, Leamington Spa, Rugby and Nuneaton have proved a big success.
Organised by Warwickshire County Council Trading Standards and Public Health Warwickshire, the events not only raised awareness of the problems caused by illegal tobacco but generated a large amount of intelligence concerning local sellers of fake and non-duty paid tobacco products.
Warwickshire County Councillor Howard Roberts, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety said: “I’m delighted that so many people took the opportunity to visit our illegal tobacco roadshows and speak to our Trading Standards Officers. Not only were Officers able to raise awareness of the problems caused by illegal tobacco but they also received a large amount of intelligence about illegal tobacco sellers and their locations.”
“Officers are already acting on this information in order to protect the health of young people and support genuine businesses across the County.”
Warwickshire County Councillor Les Caborn, Portfolio Holder for Health added: “All smoking kills but illegal tobacco helps make it easier for children to buy tobacco and keeps people hooked on a product that kills around 1,000 Warwickshire residents a year. We need to make every effort to discourage young people from taking up smoking and support existing smokers to stop. In addition to the roadshows, the Warwickshire stop smoking service quit4good, has helped thousands of smokers to become smoke free. Research has shown that you are four times more likely to stop smoking for good if you sign up to the quit4good 12 week programme.”
For more information and support to quit smoking in Warwickshire visit: quit4good.co.uk
Warwickshire Trading Standards uses local intelligence to identify shops where illegal tobacco is being sold and then utilises sniffer dogs to find any tobacco hidden on the premises.
Illegal tobacco, which is often sold at pocket money prices to young people, both threatens the livelihoods of legitimate traders and the health of young people.
Anyone with information about the manufacture or sale of illegal tobacco can phone the confidential fakes hotline on 0300 303 2636.
Warwickshire Trading Standards use the services of B.W.Y Canine, a leading specialist in detection dogs for UK and International operations.