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Prevention is Better than Cure


Drug deaths in the UK in 2018
Drug poisoning deaths in England and Wales
Drug related deaths in Northern Ireland
Drug related deaths in Scotland

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Cannabis, Mephedrone and Amphetamine Scratch and Sniff Cards

DRUGS in the community are a major concern and a dangerous public health issue. With drug related deaths ever increasing, health resources stretched and families torn apart by addiction, we all need to address this issue.

To advance the understanding of the dangers of drugs, St Andrew Print has developed the UK's ONLY drug smelling scratch and sniff technology, for drug awareness campaigns, called DRUGS – KNOW YOUR SMELLS, that features four separate drug fragrances: cannabis weed; cannabis resin; mephedrone; and amphetamine. A UNIQUE interactive drug scented card is ideal for DRUG AWARENESS and PREVENTION in community engagement, education and training as it generates many questions.

Although only some people may be aware of the cannabis smell, very few know the smells associated with mephedrone and amphetamine. Even though these drugs are odourless, when consumed the body emits distinct, somewhat pungent smells in the form of body odour, thereby contaminating clothing. Ideal for employers, parents, police forces and the licenced trade for training door security staff.

St Andrew Print's existing clients include: 

  • Police forces
  • Public health
  • Drug and alcohol action teams (DAAT’s)
  • Community safety partnerships
  • Housing groups
  • Prison service
  • Schools
  • Charities
  • Sports associations, clubs and training organisations
  • Youth clubs 
  • Interest from international organisations

This proactive campaign is one of drug awareness, with the associated smells of certain drugs, either the smell of the drug itself, or the consequence of taking the drug, in the form of body odour emitted.

Charity Praises Drug Scratch and Sniff Cards

St Andrew Print has been excellent to work with and accommodating throughout the process, striving to meet our expectations around the sourcing of different ‘smells’ for the product.

CAIR Scotland would definitely work with St Andrew Print Solutions again as this has been an excellent and stress free process from our perspective.


The campaign that instigated these cards took months of testing samples of different printed fragrances. Throughout the campaign development, we were guided by our client’s expert staff and their drug addicts, interviewed NHS doctors and pharmacists, sought advice from former police drug squad officers and gathered valuable input from university professors of chemistry.

We were advised that a distinctive body odour contaminated user's clothing, mainly through sweat, when taking mephedrone and amphetamine. Taking this information, we sourced various samples of fragrances for evaluation by our experts.

At the end of the process we delivered a campaign that was well received by them. 

We have carefully selected smells that are very off-putting to PREVENT young people experimenting with these dangerous drug. An early small investment in drug education can prevent addiction that requires a vastly more expensive ‘road to recovery’ route later.

Our initiative is to avoid the pain and suffering that families must endure at the loss of a child, or family member, through the use of NPS or drug addiction by reducing the demand for drugs through education and training.

Choices for Life

On Saturday 1st April 2017, we hosted our "Choices for Life" event at East Kilbride Shopping Centre, in partnership with NHS Lanarkshire and Cumbernauld PSYV. The event was a huge success. This was the launch of our new DRUGS – KNOW YOUR SMELLS scratch & sniff card and they went down a storm.

How We Help You

St Andrew Print are scratch and sniff specialist printers who collaborate with leading consultants having expertise in illegal drugs, health & wellbeing, community safety and sports organisations.

These drug awareness cards can be produced to a customised design and bespoke size totally in accordance with client’s corporate guidelines.

Our graphic design team will work closely with your marketing people to produce a design that is in keeping with your corporate image and to ensure the highest quality printing.

To assist charities and non-profit organisations, we can offer a free print design service.

Did You Know?

In 2018 there were 4,359 deaths due to drug misuse involving illegal drugs in England and Wales, the highest ever recorded with an additional 1,187 deaths in Scotland and 189 in Northern Ireland.

The North East of England still has the highest drug misuse mortality in England 2018 for the SIXTH year running? Whereas Wales followed the North East with the next biggest increase in its rate over the last ten years with an 84% increase.

Scotland’s mortalities increased by 27% in 2018, and still the highest rate in Europe.

The Scottish Government spent over £23million in 2018 on the heroine substitute, methadone programme, almost twice as much as England and Wales combined, and methadone contributed to 47% of drug related deaths in Scotland.

There are an estimated 3 million people had taken illicit drugs in England & Wales, 2017/18, whereas an estimated 61,500 problem drug users are in Scotland.

In 2016-17, in England alone, there were 14,053 hospital admissions where diagnosis was poisoning by illicit drugs and an additional 82,135 admissions due to drug related mental health or behavioral disorders.

In Scotland alone there were 5,468 emergency ambulance callouts in 2015 for drug issues putting extreme pressures on valuable resources.

279,793 people were in contact with drug & alcohol services 2016-17.

The estimated annual cost in the UK associated to drug misuse in 2014 was £15.4billion.

And one for parents, according to recent figures, the likelihood of pupils having ever taken drugs increases with age, from 11% of 11 year olds to 37% of 15 year olds. An estimated 580,000 secondary school aged pupils in England (24%) in 2016, took at least one drug last year. Excluding nitrous oxide and new psychoactive substances, this figure drops to 15%. Cannabis is the most widely used illegal drug, with 8% of secondary school pupils saying they took the drug in the last year, and 14% of 16 to 19 year olds.

The Children’s Society estimate there are 46,000 young people involved in County Lines, with some as young as 7 years old.

What Our Clients are Saying

UK Police Force
I personally think it’s great, shows it for how it is. I also like the NPS scratch card message as that is big on the agenda at the moment, reference to being a “guinea pig” is a great choice of phrase.

Both cards are excellent from my perspective, not only for children but for partner agencies (housing officers etc) to get used to smells helps the UK Police Forces gain information on drugs e.g. Cannabis cultivations.

Council Community Safety Partnerships
Good for use with:

• ‘Concerned others’ – family members of friends who access support from the drug service as they may have noticed a smell in their home before and never really knew what it was. They have been able to use the scratch and sniff cards with concerned others to try and narrow down what substances they are potentially using.

• Response from the young people and professionals Youth Health Team have used them with have been overwhelmingly favourable.

• Youth Health Team used in one to one intervention sessions with young people, supported housing projects, NEET traineeship providers, Pupil Referral Units and alternative curriculum providers during substance misuse awareness and health and wellbeing workshops.

• Community health events, other engagement with the community such as meetings with local police officers

• Training events - worked in a recent GP training event.

• Staff at facilities where clients misuse drugs to raise awareness

• Schools, youth club, doctor surgeries 

General positive comments:

• Good tool to get people talking, is quite different and attracts attention.

• Very positive feedback from all stating that they were an excellent education tool, most people are unaware what these drugs smell like so very informative.

• The cards are great for engaging with members of the public because can joke about the bad smelling ones.

Housing Group
We ordered a number of the Drug Awareness cards, called "DRUGS – KNOW YOUR SMELLS" from St Andrew Print, so these can be used as part of our Youth Engagement work, to raise awareness and discourage drug use within communities. This helped in raising people’s awareness so everyone is aware of the early signs and smells to look for concerning illegal drugs and links in with our overall approach to tenancy and estate management and Vulnerability Strategy “Something Doesn’t Look Right”.

Public Health and Wellbeing
Having ordered these cards on recommendation, we have used them widely with young people’s initiatives and in training sessions. The Scratch and Sniff cards have brought a lot of attention and interest, making sessions more interactive and a point of discussion. They have been very helpful especially with practitioners who may come into contact with service users when meeting them for other support or advice. A recommended tool for early intervention programme.

Prevention is Better than Cure

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