Menthol cigarettes will be made illegal in the UK

Say goodbye to that overpowering minty pong.

Roger Moore smoke a cigarette
Suave Roger Moore smoke a cigarette (probably not menthol). Image Picture Peter Ruck/BIPs/Getty

If you enjoy the odd puff on a menthol cigarette then your days might be numbered.

New EU laws coming into action this Friday outline future plans for tobacco, including standardised plain packaging ruling meaning that all tobacco companies must present their product in a plain olive box.

Philip Morris International, British American Tobacco, Imperial Tobacco and Japan Tobacco International are mounting legal challenges in a bid to protect their products.

The below photo shows an example of the drab, olive green colouring designed to put people off buying cigarettes. The 10-pack of cigarettes will also be done away with in favour of packs of 20.

Also banned are any kind of promotional phrase to highlight a perceived benefit of smoking: bid farewell to phrases like “this product is free of additives”, “is less harmful than other brands” or “organic”.

Menthol cigarettes will be on the way out for good by May 20, 2020, with the EU viewing them as easier for under-age buyers to acquire and a potential gateway to nicotine dependence.

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of ASH (Action on Smoking and Health), told Metro she was in favour of the menthol phase-out.

“There is evidence to show that menthol in cigarettes makes it easier for children to try smoking and to become addicted regular smokers,” she said. “That’s why ASH supports the ban on menthol cigarettes.”

So, bad times if you’re a menthol fan but good news if you’re Bruce Willis in Hudson Hawk – he couldn’t bare the taste…

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Loaded digital media manager Simon Reynolds has written about film and entertainment for various leading websites since 2008. Follow Simon at @simonreyn

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