Australia Advances Cigarette Bill, Defying Threats From ‘Big Tobacco’
"We believe that it will reduce smoking in younger people and the fact that tobacco companies have been using packs very effectively as one of the last forms of advertising is one reason why they're so upset about it,"
- Professor Ian Olver, chief executive officer of the Australian Cancer Council.
Australia's parliament moved forward Thursday on a landmark scheme to remove trademarks and advertising from cigarette packages, defying threats of a multi-billion-dollar legal challenge from tobacco companies.
From December next year, all cigarettes will be sold in olive green packs, which research has shown is least appealing to smokers.
Under the new laws, approved by the upper house of parliament, no trademark brand logos will be permitted on any packaging of tobacco products, although companies will be able to print their name and the cigarette brand in small, prescribed font on the packets.
The boxes will continue to carry stark health warning messages and pictures, which will cover 75% of the front of the pack and 90% of the back.