British Heart Foundation has just released a new report, “Standardised Packaging for Tobacco Products”. The report sums up recent evidence on the effectiveness of standardised packaging as a tobacco control strategy. The British Heart Foundation collaborated with the UK Center for Tobacco & Alcohol Studies, King’s College London, the Cancer Council of Victoria, the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project, and the University of Waterloo to produce this report supporting a campaign for the implementation of standardised packaging for tobacco in the UK.
Plain packages for tobacco products have restriction on their shape and size and show clearly health warnings while the brand name is in a prescribed font. Their aim is to reduce the appeal of tobacco products so as to encourage people to stop smoking and prevent young people from starting.
Smoking remains the leading cause of preventable deaths in the UK, which is partly due to the brand marketing’s effort to make tobacco products attractive. Drawing from the experience of Australia – that has already implemented standardised packaging – and based on recent UK data, the report explains the positive impacts that such an implementation could have.