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A smoke-free UK – Government wants UK to stop smoking by 2030

The Government recently carried out an independent review into how it could make smoking obsolete by the year 2030. It’s something we’ve been following with a lot of interest here at Ohm Brew.

Whether you run a vape shop  or are a smoker looking to quit, here’s a short summary of the review and how it may affect you.

About the Government’s smokefree plan

The Government first talked about its ambitions for the UK to be smoke-free in 2019. The target was that by 2030, only 5% of the population would smoke. To give you some context, 14% of adults were smokers then.

An independent report on how this goal was progressing was released by Dr Javed Khan, the former CEO of Barnardo’s, in June 2022.

The results? Not good.

The report showed that if things carried on the way they do, the Government would miss its 2030 target by at least 7 years, and up to 14 years in the poorest areas. This means the Government needs to pick up the pace.

The report suggested four radical plans of action:

1. Invest more money

The report recommends investing £125 million a year to encourage people to stop smoking, with 56% of this money dedicated to stopping smoking services.

If the Government don’t have the cash, they need to increase corporation tax or levy additional charges on the tobacco industry.

2. Increase the age of sale

The legal smoking age in the UK is currently 18, raised from 16 in 2007. However, the report suggests increasing the smoking age even further to discourage younger people from picking up the habit.

It proposes raising the tobacco sale age by one year every year, meaning the younger generation will never legally be able to buy cigarettes. They’re already going to do this in New Zealand.

3. Persuade people to quit

The report advises that the NHS needs to push cessation services more to patients, even if they’re attending hospital or their GP surgery for an unrelated issue. It’s especially important to focus on more deprived regions where more people smoke.

4. Encourage vaping

Vaping has long been established as an alternative to smoking, and the report advises that the Government should encourage smokers to vape as a way of kicking the habit.

Vaping is 95% less harmful than tobacco and is also a heck of a lot cheaper. If you’re curious, you can find out exactly how much you can save using our vaping calculator.

There are also many great flavours that can help make quitting feel much less frustrating!

Our thoughts? It will be interesting to see if the Government adopts these recommendations moving forward, and we’ll continue to watch with interest.

If you are considering quitting smoking, a vape can be a great way to gradually reduce your nicotine intake while still satisfying those cravings.

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