OTTAWA, Ontario — Canada is set to become the first nation to print health warnings directly on individual cigarettes — not just the pack! These potent messages include phrases such as “poison in every puff” and “cigarettes cause impotence.” These new mandates form part of the Tobacco Products Appearance, Packaging, and Labelling Regulations and are integral to the government’s efforts to assist adults in quitting smoking.
“Labeling the tipping paper of individual cigarettes, little cigars, tubes, and other tobacco products will make it virtually impossible to avoid health warnings altogether. Moreover, the regulations will bolster Canada’s Tobacco Strategy and its goal of achieving less than 5% tobacco use by 2035.”
“Tobacco use continues to kill 48,000 Canadians each year. We are taking action by being the first country in the world to label individual cigarettes with health warning messages. This bold step will make health warning messages virtually unavoidable, and together with updated graphic images displayed on the package, will provide a real and startling reminder of the health consequences of smoking,” says Carolyn Bennett, Canada’s Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health. “We will continue to do whatever it takes to help more people in Canada stop smoking and help young people to live healthy tobacco-free lives.”
Canada first implemented pictorial warning requirements for tobacco product packaging in 2000 to enhance awareness of the health hazards and effects linked to tobacco use. Current health-related messages and images for cigarettes and little cigars have been in effect since 2011, while those for most remaining tobacco products have remained unchanged since their introduction in 2000.
“The bold measures announced today to strengthen tobacco product labeling will ensure the dangers of these products to lung health cannot be missed. Requiring warnings directly on cigarettes — the first country to do so — will help to reduce their appeal, particularly for youth. Canada must continue to take decisive action to reduce tobacco use,” says Terry Dean, President and CEO of the Canadian Lung Association.
South West News Service writer Dean Murray contributed to this report.
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