Last December, the Australian Government released the new standard which updates and expands the graphic health warning regime in Australia. Health warnings will now be required to cover 75% of the front of packs and 90% of the back of packs (for cigarettes, slightly different for other packaging formats). A new set of 14 health warnings for cigarette packaging and new warnings for other tobacco products, including single sale cigars, were also included in the new standard.
The Government undertook extensive research to inform the new warnings and this research, along with the research for plain packaging, can be found at:
The standard which contains the updated warnings are under a different piece of legislation to plain packaging – see links and a copy of the media release below.
Competition and Consumer (Tobacco) Information Standard 2011
David Bradbury MP
Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer
GOVERNMENT UPDATES GRAPHIC HEALTH WARNINGS FOR TOBACCO PRODUCTS
The Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, David Bradbury, today announced that the
Government has updated and expanded the graphic health warnings for tobacco products.
“Today the Competition and Consumer (Tobacco) Information Standard 2011 (the Standard) was
made. The Standard updates and expands the graphic health warnings that are currently
required to be displayed on most tobacco packaging,” said Mr Bradbury.
“The Standard will apply to all tobacco products supplied in Australia in retail packaging. All
tobacco products are harmful to health. Accordingly, health warnings are being applied to convey
a consistent public health message about the risks associated with tobacco use.”
“The Standard forms an important part of a comprehensive package of measures that were
announced by the Government in April last year to target tobacco use and its harmful effects,”
Mr Bradbury added.
The updated and expanded health warnings in the Standard are based on consumer research, an
evaluation of the current health warnings, and public consultations which took place between
September 2011 and December 2011.
The Standard was made under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 with the support of the
Legislative and Governance Forum on Consumer Affairs (CAF). CAF is comprised of
Commonwealth, State and Territory Ministers responsible for consumer affairs and consumer
The Standard will commence on 1 January 2012. Transitional arrangements will allow for an
orderly transition to the updated health warnings. Between 1 January 2012 and 30 November
2012, tobacco products that are subject to the current health warnings – under the Trade
Practices (Consumer Product Information Standards) (Tobacco) Regulations 2004 – can either
continue to comply with these current requirements or they can comply with the updated
requirements under the Standard.
On 1 December 2012, the current health warnings will be replaced with the updated warnings in
the Standard. From 1 December 2012, all tobacco products supplied in Australia in retail
packaging must display the updated health warnings under the Standard.
The implementation timeframes for the Standard are aligned with the timeframes under the
Government’s Tobacco Plain Packaging Act 2011.
23 December 2011