Puffing vs. Pictures… will new graphic warnings affect how people see smoking cigarettes?

The Food and Drug administration introduced 9 new graphic warning labels for cigarettes, an attempt to further regulate tobacco products.


As seen, the labels are obvious about their warnings, and very graphic (no pun intended.) The rules implied are:

The warnings will cover the upper portion of the pack both front and back.

Fifty percent of the package must be covered.

The warnings must also cover at least 20% of a cigarette ad.

Each warning will also have a phone number — 1-800-QUIT-NOW

The labels are meant to encourage smokers to quit, and the n

ew packaging will be issued by Sept 2012.

The reason for this change? The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (FSPTCA) mandated better graphics to inform the public about smoking dangers. It’s the first change the tobacco industry has seen in 25 years. The Government will also not lose money from enforcing the rule since Tobacco industry will have to shell out money for the change.

Canada, Brazil and Australia have long been leaders in tobacco control and have had very graphic art on their packaging for years.

While I am glad the Tobacco industry has new graphics that will be “easier” to communicate ideas to the public, I’m still frustrated with other things. Of course you could just go ahead and legalize other “drugs” if you’re so concerned about the public health…..but that is an argument for another day.


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