LANGUAGE
Last updated: March 4th 2019

Health Warnings/Messages Features

Type of product: Smoked Tobacco Product
Type of Warnings / Messages Required
Pictures (Photos), Text Warnings/Messages
Location and Size of Warnings / Messages on Unit Packaging
65% of front, 65% of back, Side(s)
Rotation Required
Required
Number of Warnings / Messages Authorized to Be Displayed at Any Given Time
14
Length of Rotation Period
Specified - 12 months
Analysis

One of 14 combined picture and text health warnings must occupy 65% of the front and 65% of the back of all smoked tobacco products packages. The combined health warning must also include smoking cessation information: “Get help to stop smoking at www.nhs.uk/quit”. The combined health warnings must be rotated so that each of the 14 combined warnings appears on between 1/24 and 1/12 of the total number of packs produced under each brand name each year. There are three sets of 14 combined warnings. Set I is required from May 20, 2016 to May 19, 2017. Set II is required for the same time period in 2017 - 2018, and Set III for 2018-2019.

A general warning - "Smoking Kills - Quit now" or "Smoking Kills" - must occupy 50% of one lateral side of the package, and an information message - "Tobacco smoke contains over 70 substances known to cause cancer" - must occupy 50% of the other lateral side.

Large and individually wrapped cigars must carry a general warning covering 30% of the most visible surface, and a text-only warning covering 40% of the next most visible surface.

Plain packaging is required. Therefore, no other marks or designs to promote the tobacco product may appear on the packaging.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 11 and the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines with respect to the size, content, rotation, and format of health warnings on smoked tobacco products.

Type of product: Smokeless Tobacco Products
Type of Warnings / Messages Required
Text Warnings/Messages
Location and Size of Warnings / Messages on Unit Packaging
30% of front, 30% of back
Rotation Required
Not Required
Number of Warnings / Messages Authorized to Be Displayed at Any Given Time
1
Length of Rotation Period
Unspecified
Analysis

The sale of tobacco products for oral use (e.g., snus) is prohibited.

For other smokeless tobacco products, the following text warning must occupy 30% of the front and back of the package: “This tobacco product damages your health and is addictive.”

The law meets the minimum requirements of FCTC Art. 11 in that a health warning must occupy at least 30% of the principal display areas of a tobacco product package. To more fully align with FCTC Art. 11 and the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines, the law should require a combined text and picture warning that occupies 50% or more of the most visible surfaces of the pack. In addition, more than one warning should be authorized and these warnings should be rotated and updated over time.