Photo: Flip Franssen
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Majority of minors succeed in buying cigarettes

By Ties Keyzer

Fifty-nine percent of seventeen-year-olds succeed in buying cigarettes, according to investigations by the Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA). The results confirm research by the University of Twente, commissioned by The Investigative Desk in early 2019, which showed that 51 percent of minor-age mystery shoppers had no problems in buying tobacco products.

In the NVWA investigation, supermarkets performed best in complying with the age limit. Seventy-three per cent of the purchase efforts by minors were refused. Cafés and restaurants performed worst. They sold tobacco to 74 per cent of the mystery shoppers. The Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority announced that it will continue investigating compliance with the age limit with 17-year-old mystery shoppers in 2020.

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