UK to ban cigarette branding

The UK government has announced that it is to legislate for plain cigarette packaging later this year, a move which would mandate all manufacturers to strip graphics and colour from their packets.

Plans for the new look ciggies will be revealed in the Queen’s Speech in May and are expected to dovetail with a ban on smoking in cars in which any passenger is below the age of 16.

Research conducted on behalf of the Department of Health in March 2011found that ‘plain pack colours have negative connotations, weaken attachment to brands, project a less desirable smoker identity, and expose the reality of smoking’.

The study also elicited that non-smokers and younger respondents were more turned off by the drab packaging than older smokers.

In Australia, where similar measures have been implemented, cigarettes are sold in uniform olive green packets with graphic health warnings.

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