Canada is the first country in the world to display health warnings on cigarettes.
Canadian Minister of Mental Health and Addiction Carolyn Bennett announced that Canada will soon require health warnings to be printed on cigarettes, according to a press release from Health Canada on World No Tobacco Day (May 31).
Health Canada said the new Tobacco Product Appearance, Packaging and Labeling Regulations are designed to help adult smokers quit smoking, as well as protect youth and non-smokers from nicotine addiction.
As a result, all cigarettes sold in Canada are marked with warnings in English and French, such as ‘Cigarette smoke harms children’ and ‘Cigarette causes leukemia’.
Health Canada said the regulations are aimed at reducing smoking rates to less than 5 per cent by 2035.
The regulation will be implemented in phases from August 1, and will be implemented in most Canadian markets by the end of this year. Retailers selling packages of tobacco products must display the new warning text by the end of April 2024.
Warnings must be displayed on cigarettes by the end of July 2024 for king-size cigarettes (the size of regular cigarettes in Korea) and by the end of April 2025 for regular-size cigarettes and other products.
Bennett said in a statement that 48,000 Canadians die each year as a result of smoking. “Canada is taking action by becoming the first country in the world to place health warnings on cigarettes,” he said.
Health groups such as the Canadian Cancer Society, Heart and Stroke Foundation and Canadian Lung Association said they hope the measure will help reduce smoking rates, especially among youth.
A 2021 survey found that the proportion of smokers aged 15 and over in Canada was about 10%. The rate of smoking liquid e-cigarettes (vaping) was found to be about 17%.
Mark Jones is a world traveler and journalist for News Rebeat. With a curious mind and a love of adventure, Mark brings a unique perspective to the latest global events and provides in-depth and thought-provoking coverage of the world at large.