Switzerland - people are smoking less..

October 11, 2010 - Five months after the introduction of a nationwide smoking ban in public places, the consumption of cigarettes and cigars in Switzerland has plummeted. (Switzerland - May 1st start of nationwide law stamping out smoking in public places..)

Turnover of tobacco retailers has dropped by up to nine per cent a month and the Federal Customs Administration says the import of tobacco goods fell by 12.8 percent between May and August, according to a report in the Tages-Anzeiger newspaper.

“This development is positive for the health of everyone,” said Otto Brändli,M.D. president of the Zurich Lung League. “On average that’s two to three fewer cigarettes per person per day.” He added that the development was a “positive side effect” for smokers as well as passive smokers.

On May 1 a law came into force, banning smoking in public spaces, including bars and restaurants, schools, hospitals and shopping malls, across the country. But there are exceptions: catering outlets can set up staffed smoking rooms with ventilation and small locales of up to 80 square metres may remain open for smokers.

Cantons (the 26 cantons of Switzerland are the member states of the federal state of Switzerland) are free to decree additional regulations and those that already have stricter measures can keep them in place. (Graubünden, Switzerland - smoker ban leads to drop in heart attacks..)

However, some argue that Switzerland should have one rule for everyone. The Swiss Lung League has gathered enough signatures in favour of a people’s initiative to ban smoking in all indoor public spaces. It also wants to outlaw staffed fumoirs (smoking areas).

More - A survey of Swiss smoking habits over the past decade shows fewer teenagers taking up the habit and half of smokers wanting to give it up., swissinfo.ch, 6/7/2010.

Reference: Smoking ban hits tobacco sales, swissinfo.ch, 10/6/2010.

Switzerland - some related news briefs:
Switzerland - Federer Basel tennis tournament will no longer have a tobacco sponsor..;
Switzerland - survey teens smoking less and 50% of smokers want to quit..;
Switzerland - May 1st start of nationwide law stamping out smoking in public places..;
Switzerland - three holes let smoker have cigarette outside..;
Graubünden, Switzerland - smoker ban leads to drop in heart attacks..;
Switzerland - Davidoff sponsored Swiss Indoor Tennis Tournament begins..;
Switzerland - Imperial Tobacco sponsorship major televised European tennis event..;
Geneva, Switzerland - ban on smoking in public places returns..;
Switzerland - unified program to ban smoking in buildings open to the public..;
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