By John Ensor •
Published: 02 Dec 2023 • 17:38
A typical supermarket shop.
RECENTLY it was highlighted that there is one product still sold in Finland, but Spain banned its sale back in 2005.
Supermarkets across the globe stock a diverse array of products, shaped by regional traditions and legal constraints. This can lead to fascinating differences in what’s available on store shelves, writes ABC.
Since 2005, a nostalgic item vanished from Spanish stores due to stringent legal requirements. Once a regular favourite treat with children, these products were outlawed nearly 18 years ago, chocolate cigarettes.
This coincided with the implementation of Spain’s Anti-Tobacco Law, a landmark legislation which not only targets smoking but also restricts the sale of any items resembling tobacco products.
The introduction of the Anti-Tobacco Law in Spain marked a drastic shift in societal norms. Surprisingly, this law’s reach extended to chocolate cigarettes, a harmless-looking confectionery.
The law clearly states, ‘the sale of sweets, snacks, toys and other objects that are shaped like tobacco products and may be attractive to minors is prohibited.’ The intention was clear: to prevent the normalisation of smoking among young ones.
In contrast, Finland’s approach to similar products differs markedly. Supermarkets like K Supermarket continue to sell chocolates shaped like cigars and cigarettes, accessible to all age groups.
This stark difference in policy underscores the diverse attitudes towards products that could potentially influence public health perceptions, especially in young people.
The ban on chocolate cigarettes in Spain reflects a broader European trend towards stricter health and safety regulations. Meanwhile, countries like Finland maintain a more relaxed stance in allowing such novelty confections.
This comparison between Spain and Finland serves as a reminder of how cultural and legal differences shape our everyday experiences, even in something as routine as a trip to the supermarket.
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Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
It might have been worth noting which of these two countries has the higher number of smokers per capita.
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