Plain Packaging



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[1] followed by France, which implemented the measure at retail level from 31 December 2016.[2] In the UK plain packaging is in force at retail level as of May 2017,[3] while Ireland has signed a commencement order on 29 March 2017, enforcing standardised packaging on manufacturer level as of 30 September 2017.[4] Hungary will implement plain packaging in 2018[5] and Slovenia in January 2020.[6] 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.[7]

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 resources:

Further resources:

 

References
[1] Australian government, Introduction of plain packaging in Australia, the department of health, 27th May 2016, available from: http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/tobacco-plain
[2] Marisol Touraine publie le calendrier d’application du paquet neutre, 22 March 2016, Ministère des Affaires sociales et de la Santé, available from: http://social-sante.gouv.fr/actualites/presse/communiques-de-presse/article/marisol-touraine-publie-le-calendrier-d-application-du-paquet-neutre
[3] Canadian Cancer Society, cigarette package Heath warnings, International status report fifth edition, October 2016, available from: https://www.cancer.ca/~/media/cancer.ca/CW/for%20media/Media%20releases/2016/CCS-international-cigarette-packaging-report-2016-English.pdf?la=en
[4] Department of Health Ireland, Standardised Packaging of Tobacco to be signed into law, to come into force in September http://health.gov.ie/blog/press-release/standardised-packaging-of-tobacco-to-be-signed-into-law-to-come-into-force-in-september/
[5] Canadian Cancer Society, cigarette package Heath warnings, International status report fifth edition, October 2016, available from: https://www.cancer.ca/~/media/cancer.ca/CW/for%20media/Media%20releases/2016/CCS-international-cigarette-packaging-report-2016-English.pdf?la=en
[6] WHO Implementation Database, available from: http://apps.who.int/fctc/implementation/database/groups/slovenia-passes-law-require-plain-tobacco-packaging-2020
[7] Canadian Cancer Society, cigarette package Heath warnings, International status report fifth edition, October 2016, available from: https://www.cancer.ca/~/media/cancer.ca/CW/for%20media/Media%20releases/2016/CCS-international-cigarette-packaging-report-2016-English.pdf?la=en

Submitted by: Andrea Glahn, 8 October 2016