Cigars to get plain packaging

Health Minister Nicola Roxon on Monday released a consultation paper explaining how plain-packaging rules for tobacco products other than cigarettes would work.

Legislation requiring plain, olive green tobacco packaging is now before parliament.

La Casa del Habano

La Casa del Habano

This new consultation will help the government develop regulations on how that legislation, once law,would apply to products other than cigarettes.

The consultation paper proposes that the packaging tobacco products are sold in would be in the same colour with no company branding or logos.

They would still have dominant and graphic health warnings.

Ms Roxon said the government wanted the approach to plain packaging to be the same as far as possible across all tobacco products.

“Whether you are talking about cigarettes, cigars or pipe tobacco, all are addictive and all are harmful,” she said in a statement.

As many of these products are manufactured overseas, the government’s proposals would allow them to be imported without the plain packaging.

But they must be covered in the drab colour before they go on sale.

Options discussed for this include stickers that completely cover the product’s original packaging, or purpose-made sealed bags or cigar tubes.

Cigar bands would have to be removed, replaced or covered with a sticker.

The government proposes that brand names and variants could be printed on the plain packaging, as with cigarettes, or they could be handwritten on a white rectangle on the packaging or a white sticker.

Submissions on the proposals are open until October 28.

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