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Letter | Why a new plain packaging law should also cover cigarette design

To achieve the New Zealand Government’s Smokefree Nation Goal of 2025, the country probably needs major strategies that go beyond business-as-usual. These strategies could include higher tobacco tax increases every year to 2025, or various other tobacco endgame strategies. But supplementary initiatives such as plain packaging of tobacco products are also likely to help achieve the nation’s smokefree goal.

However, we suggest that any new plain packaging law for New Zealand should also incorporate the design of cigarettes itself. For example, it should not allow new cigarette design features such as compressible capsules of menthol to make the overall smoke experience more pleasant. It should also be used to the upmost to remove all attractive features of packaging, such as foil inserts for covering graphic health warnings.

Such steps are some of the many that will be required to ensure that the New Zealand Government achieves its Smokefree Nation goal by 2025.

To read more, view this letter published in NZ Medical Journal.

Citation: Van der Deen F.S., Wilson N. (2013). Why a new plain packaging law should also cover cigarette design. (Letter) New Zealand Medical Journal,126(1377), URL: http://journal.nzma.org.nz/journal/126-1377/5725/ (log in required before January 2014)

Or you can contact the author:

Frederieke S. van der Deen
University of Otago, Wellington
email: frederieke.vanderdeen@otago.ac.nz