Plain packaging update: new legislation in France, while Australia shakes off legal challenge
France introduces plain packaging legislation
France has become the latest country in Europe to bring in a plain packaging law for tobacco products.
Plain packaging aims to make smoking seem less attractive, especially among younger people, in order to reduce the number of people that smoke.
The new law means that, from May 2016, all tobacco products sold in France will need to be sold in plain packaging without the tobacco companies’ logos.
This step from France sees them follow Ireland and the UK, who both passed plain packaging laws earlier this year. Other countries in Europe, including Norway and Turkey, are thought to be considering introducing similar laws.
Major tobacco company’s legal challenge against Australia’s plain packaging law fails
In other plain packaging news, Australia has successfully shaken off a legal challenge from Philip Morris, a major tobacco company.
Since Australia brought in its ground-breaking law in 2012, there have been many threats of legal action from the tobacco industry who claim that plain packaging legislation breaks intellectual property laws.
It is thought that this result in Australia could embolden other countries to bring in their own plain packaging laws.
However, the World Trade Organisation is currently considering another case against Australia, and several tobacco companies recently took the British government to court, in a case that is still ongoing. It is likely that more similar legal challenges could follow.