Standardised packaging regulations releasedHealth
Associate Health Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga today released draft regulations and a consultation document which aims to standardise the look of cigarette packs.
“The design and appearance of cigarette packets are powerful marketing tools for vendors. The Government is proposing to use the standard brown-green packaging which is similar to what is used in Australia,” Mr Lotu-Iiga says.
“We’re proposing that mandatory health warnings will cover at least 75 per cent of the front of the packs and all tobacco imagery will be removed. Brand names will be allowed but regulations will standardise how and where the printing is.
“These draft regulations and consultation are another important step in the process towards Smokefree 2025.
“Twelve New Zealanders die prematurely every day from smoking related illnesses. Each of these deaths is preventable.”
The Smokefree Environments (Tobacco Plain Packaging) Amendment Bill is expected to be passed this year. The Bill is currently awaiting Second Reading.
The consultation period ends on 29 July. A paper will be taken to Cabinet later this year. The regulations will not come into effect until the Bill is passed.
Australia’s plain packaging regime has been in place since December 2012. There is now growing evidence showing plain packaging in Australia is working especially for young people. Australian statistics show a 14.4 per cent decline in tobacco sales since plain packaging was introduced.
More information on the draft regulations and consultation document can be found at: www.health.govt.nz