Australia – High Court rejects tobacco industry challenge to plain packaging

The Australian Government and international public health community welcomed the decision of the High Court of Australia on 15 August 2012 to reject the tobacco industry legal challenge against Australia's tobacco plain packaging laws.

Australia is the first country in the world to require plain packaging, which is recommended in the guidelines for implementation of important demand reduction provisions of the WHO FCTC – Article 11 (Packaging and labelling of tobacco products) and Article 13 (Tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship).

Plain packaging is a vital preventative public health measure which will restrict tobacco industry logos, brand imagery, colours and promotional text appearing on packs. Brand and product names will be in a standard colour, position and standard font size and style.

All tobacco products sold in Australia must be in plain packaging by 1 December 2012.

For more information, contact Sharon Appleyard, Assistant Secretary, Tobacco Control Taskforce, Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing (sharon.appleyard@health.gov.au)

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