A REVELATION that almost 2000 youngsters in Fife are regular smokers, some of them as young as 10, has led to calls for cigarettes and other tobacco products to be sold in plain packaging.
A recent survey by Cancer Research UK discovered around 1960 children between 10-15 years old smoke often in the Kingdom, while 930 people in Fife die every year through a smoking-related illness.
Area MP Lindsay Roy is among those backing the charity’s ‘The Answer is Plain’ crusade, after admitting he was “horrified” to hear about the statistics.
He said: “Anything that can be done to discourage young people from starting smoking must be done.
“It is essential that we do everything we possibly can to prevent people, especially children, starting smoking, and selling cigarettes in plain packing would be a positive move.
“It’s a measure which is likely to prove popular: in a recent YouGov poll, 80 per cent of Scots taking part agreed that tobacco marketing is harmful to children.”
The charity’s research also showed that more than a third of all cancer deaths in Scotland, 35 per cent, are due to smoking.
It said the campaign is a “really important step”.
A spokesman added: “The tobacco industry is relying more and more on stylish tobacco packs to recruit new smokers.
“With eight out of 10 smokers starting by the age of 19, plain packs will take us one step closer to a future where people don’t start smoking in the first place.”
Mr Roy said he’s also keen that people who already smoke but want to quit get help.