LANGUAGE
Last updated: September 18th 2019

Other Packaging and Labeling Requirements

Warning requirements on unit packaging and labeling (e.g., packs)

Yes
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Analysis

The 1995 Regulations Relating to the Labelling, Advertising, and Sale of Tobacco Products require warnings on the tobacco product “package.” Package, in turn, is defined as any “container, receptacle or wrapper in which tobacco products are sold, supplied or distributed at wholesale or at retail,” thereby ensuring that unit packaging contain warnings.

These provisions meet FCTC Art. 11.

Warning/messages required on outside packaging and labeling (e.g., cartons)

Yes
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Analysis

The 1995 Regulations require warnings on the tobacco product “package.” Package, in turn, is defined as any “container, receptacle or wrapper in which tobacco products are sold, supplied or distributed at wholesale or at retail,” thereby ensuring that outside packaging, such as cartons, contain warnings.

These provisions meet FCTC Art. 11.

Warning texts must be in the principal language(s) of the country

Yes
Analysis

Warning texts must appear in one of the principal languages of South Africa, and in the same language as the main language used on the package.

This legislative provision meets the FCTC Art. 11 requirements of warning texts appearing in the principal language of the country.

A requirement that warnings or messages may not be placed where they may be permanently damaged or concealed when opening the pack

Yes
Analysis

The 1995 Regulations provide that warnings and messages shall be placed in such a manner that they “cannot be destroyed or become unreadable when the package is opened in any normal way.”

This provision aligns with FCTC Art. 11 and the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines.

A requirement that tax stamps or other required markings may not be placed where they may conceal warnings or messages

No
Analysis

The law and regulations do not specify where tax stamps shall be placed, nor specify that warnings and messages may not be placed where they may be concealed by tax stamps or other required markings.

To more closely align with FCTC Art. 11 and the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines, the law or regulations should specify that tax stamps or other required markings may not be placed where they may conceal warnings and messages.

A requirement to display qualitative (descriptive) constituents and emissions messages

No
Analysis

One of the secondary warnings contains the statement: “Tobacco smoke contains many harmful chemicals such as carbon monoxide, cyanide, nicotine and tar, which can cause disease and death.” However, this is not required on every tobacco product package, but only as one of the eight secondary warnings.

To align with FCTC Art. 11 and the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines, the regulations should require qualitative disclosures on constituents and emissions on every tobacco product package.

Prohibition on the display of figures for emission yields (including tar, nicotine, and carbon monoxide)

No
Analysis

There is no prohibition on the display of figurative yields. On the contrary, the regulations require display of tar and nicotine yields on the side panel warning.

To align with the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines, figures for emission yields should be prohibited.

Plain or standardized packaging

No
Analysis

Plain packaging of tobacco products is not required. The FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines provide that Parties should consider adopting plain packaging measures that restrict or prohibit the use of logos, colors, brand images or other promotional information on packaging other than brand and product names displayed in a standard color and font style. Plain packaging aims to reduce the appeal of tobacco products, to increase the notice ability of health warnings, and to reduce the ability of the packaging of tobacco products to mislead consumers about the harmful effects of smoking.

Prohibition on misleading tobacco product packaging and labeling including terms, descriptors, trademarks, or figurative or other signs (e.g., logos, colors, brand images that directly create a false impression that a tobacco product is less harmful than other tobacco products)

Yes
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Analysis

The law prohibits the use of any misleading term, descriptor, trade mark, figurative, or other sign that directly or indirectly creates the impression that a particular tobacco product is less harmful than another tobacco product.

This provision meets FCTC Art. 11 with regard to misleading tobacco product packaging and labeling.