Regulations standardising the packaging of tobacco products have been approved by Cabinet and released online, Associate Health Minister Nicky Wagner and Maori Party Co-Leader Marama Fox say.
“More than 5000 New Zealanders die of smoking-related illnesses each year — that’s about 14 people per day, or more than one every two hours,” Ms Wagner says.
“Standardised packaging, along with the existing suite of tobacco control measures and stop smoking services, is the logical next step toward our Smokefree 2025 goal.
“It also sends a clear message that the Government is serious about ending unnecessary smoking-related illness and death.”
Ms Fox says standardised packaging will reduce the appeal of tobacco products and smoking, particularly for children and young people.
“The bland packs will maximise the impact of health warnings and cut out any false impression that smoking is cool or glamorous,” Ms Fox says.
“This will make a real difference to our whanau and communities who witness the harm smoking causes every day.”
Under the regulations, all cigarettes and tobacco products will be in brown/green-coloured packaging, with enlarged health warnings and brand names in a standardised font. The new packs will roll out from 14 March 2018.
For more detail on the regulations, visit: http://www.health.govt.nz/standardised-packaging