The smokers’ group Forest has launched a new website to fight plans to introduce plain tobacco packaging in Ireland.
Plain Packs Plain Stupid, which has a sludge-brown background to highlight the dull packaging proposed by Health Minister James Reilly, lists some of the consumer arguments against standardized packs.
It also features a campaign video, The Burning Issue, which features interviews with smokers in Dublin.
“The proposed legislation is not fit for purpose,” said John Mallon, spokesman for Forest Eireann.
“Advocates say plain packaging will deter children from smoking. People start smoking for many reasons, often peer pressure, but packaging isn’t one of them.
“I don’t know any smoker who began because they were attracted by the packet. It’s nonsense.
“Plain packaging is gesture politics. It won’t stop children smoking but it might encourage an illicit market in branded or counterfeit packs.
“We urge the government to abandon this reckless experiment that could do far more harm than good.”