Australia is considering legislation to remove all brand logos from cigarette packs, instead replacing the colorful designs with a graphic warning about the dangers of smoking. The brand name would appear in small print at the bottom of the cigarette pack. The Australian government is also raising the cigarette tax by 25 percent.
Health advocates support the move as another way to devalue individual brands of cigarettes and the act of smoking entirely, as well as making cigarettes less attractive to young people, who may choose a certain brand because it has a “hip” factor attached to it.
The tobacco industry has vowed to fight the legislation in court if it passes under a provision in Australia’s constitution regarding intellectual property rights. Those opposed to the legislation want to see evidence that plain packaging will deter people from smoking. Retailers say the tax hike will hurt their businesses and increase black market activity.
Do you think banning logos on cigarette packs is a good idea? Would you like to see similar legislation considered in the U.S.?