ENSP strongly supports plain packaging as an effective measure for combatting tobacco consumption.
While scientific evidence shows that plain packaging has a positive impact on public health, the WHO FCTC and the EU Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) provide legal frameworks for introducing plain packaging. ENSP therefore encourages all EU Member States to introduce plain packaging and to evaluate the results of the implementation in their population. Read more about the reasons for introducing plain packaging in ERS/ENSP Joint Statement on Plain Packaging.
Status of Plain Packaging implementation
Australia was the first country to adopt the measure and implement it in 2012 followed by France, which implemented the measure at retail level from 31 December 2016. In the UK plain packaging is in force at retail level as of May 2017, while Ireland has signed a commencement order on 29 March 2017, enforcing standardised packaging on manufacturer level as of 30 September 2017. Hungary will implement plain packaging in 2018 and Slovenia in January 2020. A number of other countries have already taken strong steps in the legislation process or formally considered to introduce the measure such as Norway, New Zealand, Canada, Uruguay, Thailand, Singapore, Belgium, Romania, Georgia, Turkey, Finland, Chile and South Africa.
Summary of implementation dates at manufacturer and retailer levels
|Country||Manufacturer Level||Retail Level|
|1.||Australia||Oct. 1, 2012||Dec. 1, 2012|
|2.||France||May 20, 2016||Jan. 1, 2017|
|3.||United Kingdom||May 20, 2016||May 20, 2017|
|4.||Norway||July 1, 2017||July 1, 2018|
|5.||Ireland||Sept. 30, 2017||Sept. 30, 2018|
|6.||New Zealand||Mar. 14, 2018||June 6, 2018|
|7.||Hungary *||May 20, 2018||May 20, 2019|
|8.||Slovenia||Jan. 1, 2020||Jan. 1, 2020|
* In Hungary, any new brands placed on the market from Aug. 20, 2016 must be in plain packages
- ENSP welcomes the European Court of Justice’s decision to reject challenges against the Tobacco Products Directive
- Dods’ report on ENSP-ERS World NoTobacco Day conference: Plain packaging to protect our youth: progress made and challenges ahead