Research by tobacco company JTI into the sale of illicit tobacco has found that 61% of store test purchased in the Bolton area were selling the product.
Test purchasers acting on behalf of JTI were able to buy illicit tobacco in 19 out of the 31 stores visited in the area, with packs of illegal cigarettes on sale for as little as £4.50 – half the price of the cheapest legal product – while counterfeit 50g packs of RYO could be purchased for as little as £5.00 – around one fifth of the price of the genuine product.
This follows research conducted in the area in 2018 which found that 62% of stores visited (23 out of 37) were selling illicit tobacco.
Additional consumer research conducted for JTI also reveals that a quarter of cigarettes and half of RYO tobacco consumed last year in the North West was not subject to UK taxes, making it one of the highest regions in England for levels of non UK duty paid consumption.
These regional findings follow the recent launch of JTI’s “Postcode Calculator”– a free-to-use online tool on www.jtiadvance/DontBeComplict which enables retailers to find out how their local area is affected by illicit tobacco and raise awareness about the damaging impact illicit tobacco has on local communities across the UK. By simply entering a postcode area (e.g. BL for the Bolton area), retailers can find out how