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Standardised Tobacco Packaging

Volume 583: debated on Thursday 26 June 2014

The Government have today published the “Consultation on the introduction of regulations for standardised packaging of tobacco products”. This consultation is being conducted on a UK-wide basis.

In November 2013, the Department of Health commissioned Sir Cyril Chantler to undertake an independent review of whether the introduction of standardised packaging of tobacco is likely to have an effect on public health, in particular in relation to children. The report of the Chantler review, which was published in April 2014, concluded that if standardised packaging was introduced, it would have a positive impact on public health.

Before reaching a decision on whether to introduce standardised packaging of tobacco products, we are holding a final, short consultation. This consultation will run for six weeks until 7 August. So that our decision on whether to introduce standardised packaging is properly and fully informed, the consultation includes a set of draft regulations so that it is clear how such a policy would work in practice. The draft regulations set out proposed requirements for the packaging of cigarettes and hand-rolling tobacco, and requirements for the appearance of individual cigarettes, should standardised packaging be introduced.

In the consultation that has been published today, we ask, in particular, for views on anything new since the last full public consultation on standardised packaging that we ran in 2012 that is relevant to the development of this policy, including evidence relating to the wider implications of introducing standardised packaging. In July 2012, we published the “Consultation on standardised packaging of tobacco products”. The report of the 2012 consultation was published in July 2013.

The consultation on the introduction of regulations for standardised packaging of tobacco products has been placed in the Library. Copies are available to hon. Members from the Vote Office and to noble Lords from the Printed Paper Office.

I encourage any person or organisation with an interest in standardised packaging of tobacco products to engage with the consultation.

We have also today published on the web the detailed responses that were received to the 2012 consultation. These can be seen at:

www.gov.uk/government/consultations/standardised-packaging-of-tobacco-products