Tobacco Plain Packaging
Fact SheetWhy is the Australian Government introducing tobacco plain packaging?
Smoking remains one of the leading causes of preventable death and disease among Australians, killing an estimated 15,000 Australians every year. Smoking-related disease costs the Australian economy and society approximately $31.5 billion a year. The Australian Government is committed to helping smokers quit, as well as reducing the number of Australians taking up the habit.
Research shows that industry branding and packaging design on tobacco products can mislead consumers about the harms of smoking, make smoking more appealing, particularly among young people, and reduce the effectiveness of health warnings on tobacco products.
What other reforms is the Australian Government implementing to reduce smoking and its harmful effects?
The introduction of tobacco plain packaging is part of a comprehensive suite of reforms the Government is implementing.
- new and expanded health warnings on tobacco retail packaging
- a 25 per cent tobacco excise increase in April 2010
- more than $85 million of investment in anti-smoking social marketing campaigns
- legislation to restrict Internet advertising of tobacco products in Australia
- extended listing of nicotine replacement therapies and other smoking cessation support on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
- record investments (about $100 million) to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to reduce smoking rates
- reduction of the traveller tobacco duty-free concession from 250 cigarettes or 250 grams of tobacco to 50 cigarettes or 50 grams of cigars or tobacco products from 1 September 2012.
What is the role of state and territory governments in tobacco plain packaging?
Tobacco plain packaging is being implemented nationally by the Australian Government and complements state and territory tobacco control measures.
What are the deadlines for compliance with the plain packaging and new health warning requirements?
From 1 October 2012:
- All tobacco products manufactured or packaged in Australia, for the Australian market, must be in plain packaging.
From 1 December 2012:
- All tobacco products sold, offered for sale or otherwise supplied in Australia must be in plain packaging and be labelled with new and expanded health warnings.
Who is affected by plain packaging and the new health warning requirements?
Anyone who manufactures, purchases or supplies tobacco products in Australia must ensure the tobacco products comply with the plain packaging and new health warning requirements, unless the tobacco products are for export out of Australia.
D0832 JULY 2012
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This fact sheet is intended to provide general information on the tobacco plain packaging and new health warning requirements. It should not be used as a substitute for legal or other expert advice. All information in this publication is correct as at July 2012.
The Tobacco Plain Packaging Information Kit provides practical information on the responsibilities and obligations of retailers and other suppliers of tobacco products under the new Tobacco Plain Packaging Act 2011.
eHealth.gov.au is your gateway to Australia's personally controlled electronic health record system, linking you to information about eHealth records and the system itself. Visit www.ehealth.gov.au
On 20 April 2012, the Prime Minister and Minister Butler unveiled a comprehensive package of reforms to build a better, fairer, more sustainable and more nationally consistent aged care system.