Camelot UK Lotteries, operator of the UK’s National Lottery, has confirmed that it has stopped selling £10 category scratchcards as part of an effort to tackle problem gambling.
Initial plans to withdraw its highest priced scratchcards were announced back in the summer, with the operator acknowledging that these particular games over-indexed among problem gamblers.
Camelot instructed all of its retailers to remove these scratchcards from sale by 27 September, with any remaining stock returned to Camelot.
The highest priced instant win National Lottery scratchcard games in UK shops are now £5.
“Even though it’s widely acknowledged that the risk of problem play associated with our games is very low, player protection has always underpinned the way we run the National Lottery,” a Camelot spokesperson told iGamingBusiness.com.
“We believed this was the right thing to do to help protect the very small minority of players concerned (less than 1% of all National Lottery players). We worked closely with our regulator, the Gambling Commission, on this at the time and are pleased that it welcomed the action we took.”
Camelot’s scratchcard rules state that players have 180 days to claim any prizes after a game’s closure date. This means consumers who purchased one of the £10 games before they were taken off sale still have a few months to claim their winnings.
The move comes after the UK Government in July announced plans to launch a new consultation over proposals to increase the minimum age consumers must be to purchase a scratchcard and play online instant win games from 16 to 18.
At the time, the Government said the idea behind the move was to help protect young people from the potential risks of gambling-related harm.
In June, Camelot reported a record £1.83bn in digital sales for the Lottery in the 12 months to March 31, 2019. Overall ticket sales were also up to £7.21bn for the year.
Image: David Holt