Tobacco packaging warning messages

Tobacco packaging warning messages are warning messages that appear on the packaging of cigarettes and other tobacco products concerning the health effects of those products. They have been implemented in an effort to enhance the public's awareness of the harmful effects of smoking. In general, warnings used in different countries try to emphasize the same messages. Warnings for some countries are listed below. Such warnings have been required in tobacco advertising for many years.

A 2009 review summarises that "There is clear evidence that tobacco package health warnings increase consumers’ knowledge about the health consequences of tobacco use." The warning messages "contribute to changing consumers’ attitudes towards tobacco use as well as changing consumers’ behaviour."[1]

At the same time, such warning labels have been subject to criticism.[2][3] A 2007 meta-analyses indicated that communications emphasizing the severity of a threat are less effective than communications focusing on susceptibility,[4] and that warning labels may have no effect among smokers who are not confident that they can quit, which lead the authors to recommend exploring different, potentially more effective methods of behavior change.[5]


Text-based warnings on cigarette packets are used in Albania.

Pirja e
duhanit vret
(Smoking kills)


General warning:

Fumar es muy malo para la salud. Puede causar enfermedades del corazon, gangrena, cancer de pulmon, funcion pulmonar reducida, bronquitis cronica, accidente cerebrovascular, cancer de garganta, cancer de boca y enfisema. Si todavia usted fuma, no diga que no le advertimos.

As of January 30, 2013, all cigarette packages must include graphical warning labels that show the detrimental effects on the health of long-term smokers.[6]

Translation of words in box: Smoking is very bad for health. It can cause heart disease, gangrene, lung cancer, reduced lung function, chronic bronchitis, stroke, throat and mouth cancer, and emphysema. If you smoke despite all this, don't say that we did not warn you.


On 1 December 2012, Australia introduced groundbreaking legislation and the world's toughest tobacco packaging warning messages to date.[7] All marketing and brand devices were removed from the package and replaced with warnings, only the name of the product remain in generic standard sized text. All tobacco products sold, offered for sale or otherwise supplied in Australia were plain packaged and labelled with new and expanded health warnings.[8][9]


In Azerbaijan, cigarette packages carry a small notice: "Ministry of Health warns: Smoking is dangerous for your health", but this is usually printed in light and small fonts, and the first part of the message is not always visible.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Front of packaging (covers 30% of surface):

Back of packaging (covers 50% of surface):

Before 2011, a small warning with the text Pušenje je štetno za zdravlje (Smoking is harmful to health) was printed on the back of cigarette packets.


Brazil's third and current batch of graphic images, mandatory on all cigarette packs.

Brazil was the second country in the world and the first country in Latin America to adopt mandatory warning images in cigarette packages.[10] Warnings and graphic images illustrating the risks of smoking occupy 100% of the back of cigarettes boxes since 2001. In 2008, the government elected a third batch of images, aimed at younger smokers.[10]

Since 2003, the sentence

Este produto contém mais de 4,7 mil substâncias tóxicas, e nicotina que causa dependência física ou psíquica. Não existem níveis seguros para consumo dessas substâncias. (This product contains over 4700 toxic substances and nicotine, which causes physical or psychological addiction. There are no safe levels for the intake of these substances.)

is displayed in all packs.


A Canadian Number 7 cigarette package, with 1 of the 16 warnings found on packages between 2000 and 2011

Canada has had 3 phases of tobacco warning labels. The first set of warnings was introduced in 1989 under the Tobacco Products Control Act, and required warnings to be printed on all tobacco products sold legally in Canada. The set consisted of 4 messages printed in black-and-white on the front and back of the package, and was expanded in 1994 to include 8 messages covering 25% of the front top of the package.[11] In 2000, the Tobacco Products Information Regulations (TPIR) were passed under the Tobacco Act. The regulations introduced a new set of 16 warnings. Each warning was printed on the front and back of the package, covering 50% of the surface, with a short explanation and a picture illustrating that particular warning, for example:

85% of lung cancers are caused by smoking.
80% of lung cancer victims die within three years.

accompanied by a picture of a human lung detailing cancerous growths.

Additionally, on the inside of the packaging or, for some packets, on a pull-out card, "health information messages" provide answers and explanations regarding common questions and concerns about quitting smoking and smoking-related illnesses. The side of the package also featured information on toxic emissions and constituent levels.[12]

In 2011, the TPIR were replaced for cigarettes and little cigars with the Tobacco Products Labelling Regulations (Cigarettes and Little Cigars). These regulations introduced the third and current set of 16 warnings in Canada. Currently, cigarette and little cigar packages in Canada must bear new graphic warning messages that cover 75% of the front and back of the package. The interior of each package contains 1 of 8 updated health warning messages, all including the number for a national quitline. The side of the package now bears 1 of 4 simplified toxic emission statements. These labels were fully implemented on cigarette and little cigar packages by June 2012 (though the 2000 labels still appear on other tobacco products). Canada also prohibits terms such as "light" and "mild" from appearing on tobacco packaging.[12] The current labels were based on extensive research and a long consultation process that sought to evaluate and improve upon the warnings introduced in 2000.[13]

In accordance with Canadian law regarding products sold legally in Canada, the warnings are provided in both English and French. Imported cigarettes to be sold in Canada which do not have the warnings are affixed with sticker versions when they are sold legally in Canada.

Health Canada is also considering laws mandating plain packaging, in which legal tobacco product packaging would still include warning labels, but brand names, fonts, and colours would be replaced with simple unadorned text, thereby reducing the impact of tobacco industry marketing techniques.[14]

There have been complaints from some Canadians due to the graphic nature of the labels, but they generally enjoy wide public support.[15]


Starting in November 2006, all cigarette packages sold in Chile are required to have one of two health warnings, a graphic pictorial warning or a text-only warning. These warnings are replaced with a new set of two warnings each year.[16]


Under laws of the People's Republic of China, "Law on Tobacco Monopoly" (中华人民共和国烟草专卖法) Chapter 4 Article 18 and "Regulations for the Implementation of the Law on Tobacco Monopoly" (中华人民共和国烟草专卖法实施条例) Chapter 5 Article 29, cigarettes and cigars sold within the territory of China should indicate the grade of tar content and "Smoking is hazardous to your health" (吸烟有害健康) in the Chinese language on the packs and cartons.

The warnings were revised in 2009. The following warnings shows what is printed at the current time.

European Union

Cigarette packets and other tobacco packaging must include warnings in the same size and format and using the same approved texts (in the appropriate local languages) in all member states of the European Union.

These warnings are displayed in black Helvetica bold on a white background with a thick black border. Ireland prefaces its warnings with "Irish Government Warning", Latvia with "Veselības ministrija brīdina" (Health Ministry Warning) and Spain with "Las Autoridades Sanitarias Advierten (The Health Board Warns). In member states with more than one official language, the warnings are displayed in all languages, with the sizes adjusted accordingly (for example in Belgium the messages are written in Dutch, French and German, in Luxembourg in French and German and in Ireland, in Irish and English). All cigarette packets sold in the European Union must display the content of nicotine, tar, and carbon monoxide in the same manner on the side of the packet.

In 2003, it was reported that sales of cigarette cases had surged, attributable to the introduction of more prominent warning labels on cigarette packs by an EU directive in January 2003.[17] Alternatively, people choose to hide the warnings using various arguably "funny" stickers, such as "You could be hit by a bus tomorrow."[17]

Austria and Germany

Carton of German cigarettes, complete with warning
ist tödlich.
(Smoking is lethal)
Rauchen kann
tödlich sein
(Smoking can be lethal)


Front of packaging (covers 30% of surface):

Pušenje ubija
(Smoking kills)


Pušenje ozbiljno šteti vama i
drugima oko vas
(Smoking seriously harms you and others around you)

Back of packaging (covers 40% of surface):

The last warning contains a mistranslation from Directive 2001/37/EC – "hydrogen" was translated as ugljik (carbon) instead of vodik. It was nevertheless signed into law and started appearing on cigarette packages in March 2009.

Front of packaging 2004–2009
Back of packaging 2004–2009
Side of packaging 2004–2009


Front of packaging:

Back of packaging:

Side of packaging:


Between 1997 and 2004, a simple text label warning Pušenje je štetno za zdravlje (Smoking is harmful to health) was used.


Front side
Το κάπνισμα

Τütün içmek öldürür.
(Smoking kills.)


Το κάπνισμα βλάπτει
σοβαρά εσάς και τους
γύρω σας.
Τütün içmek
size çevrenizdekilere
ciddi zararlar verir.
(Smoking seriously harms you and those around you.)
Back side

Czech Republic

může zabíjet
(Smoking can kill)


Warning texts in tobacco products, health warnings, which are reproduced on the packaging of cigarettes and other tobacco products. It is implemented in an effort to strengthen public knowledge about the dangers of smoking.

The order was introduced in Denmark on 31 December 1991. The Order was last revised on 2 October 2003, which also imposed ban on the words "light" and "mild" on Danish cigarette packages, as did European Union countries.

The marking shall appear on one third of the most visible part of the package.

kan dræbe
(Smoking can kill)

For smokeless tobacco use above markings does not, whereas the label "Denne tobaksvare kan være sundhedsskadelig og er afhængighedsskabende" (This tobacco product can damage your health and is addictive) is always used for such products.


On the left there is a new Lucky Strike cigarette pack by a new EU directive meanwhile on the right there's an obsolete pack as red. The warning texts are both in Finnish and Swedish as they both are official languages in Finland.

In Finland, warning signs are written in both Finnish and Swedish languages.

Tupakointi on
Rökning kan
(Smoking is perilous / Smoking can kill)


Warning on the French cigarette packaging
Front of packaging (covers 30% of surface)
Fumer tue
(Smoking kills)


Fumer nuit gravement à votre santé et à celle
de votre entourage
(Smoking seriously harms your health and that of others around you)
Rear of packaging (covers 40% of surface, similar design)
Left or right side of packaging
Other side of packaging
Other characteristics


(Smoking kills)


A dohányzás
halált okozhat.
(Smoking can kill.)


Packet of Irish cigarettes, complete with warning
Toradh caithimh
tobac – bás
Smoking kills

Ireland currently follows EU standards (see above), but previously ran its own scheme, where one of 8 messages was placed on the pack, as defined in SI 326/1991.[18]

After a High Court settlement in January 2008, it was accepted that the warnings on tobacco products must appear in all official languages of the state.[19] As a result, the European Communities (Manufacture, Presentation and Sale of Tobacco Products) (Amendment) Regulations 2008 were enacted.[20] This states that tobacco products going to market after 30 September 2008 must carry warnings in Irish and English. A year-long transition period applied to products which were on the market prior to 1 October 2008, which may have been sold until 1 October 2009.

Each packet of tobacco products must carry:


Il fumo uccide
(Smoking kills)

Other text is sometimes placed in the packets, for example some packets contain leaflets which have all the above warnings written on them, with more detailed explanations and reasons to give up, and advice from Philip Morris.


Smēķēšana nogalina - atmetiet tagad!
(Smoking kills - quit now!)


The Netherlands

This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.


This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.

Front of packaging (covers 30% of surface):

Palenie zabija
(Smoking kills)


Palenie poważnie
szkodzi Tobie
i osobom w Twoim
(Smoking seriously harms you and others around you)

There are also warnings on the back of every packet:


A warning message on a Portuguese pack of Lucky Strike
Fumar mata
(Smoking kills)


Fumatul ucide
(Smoking kills)

General warning (on the front of cigarette packages, covering at least 40% of the area):

Additional warnings (on the back of cigarette packages, covering at least 50% of the area):


Front of packaging (covers 30% of surface)
Kajenje ubija
(Smoking kills)


Kajenje resno škoduje vam in ljudem okoli vas
(Smoking seriously harms you and others around you)
Rear of packaging (covers 40% of surface)


In Spain, cigarette packages are preceded by warnings on both sides of the package marked "Las Autoridades Sanitarias advierten" (Health authorities warn), written in black and white above the black part of the standard warning.

Fumar mata
(Smoking kills)


Fumar perjudica gravemente su salud y la de los que están a su alrededor
(Smoking seriously harms you and others around you)
Front of cigarette packages
Back of cigarette packages


General warnings on all Swedish cigarette packagings have been in force since 1977.

Front of cigarette packages
Back of cigarette packages
Rear side of snus packaging

United Kingdom

Cigarette pack in the United Kingdom.

In 1971, tobacco companies printed on the left side of cigarette packets "WARNING by H.M. Government, SMOKING CAN DAMAGE YOUR HEALTH".

In 1991, the E.U. tightened laws on tobacco warnings. "TOBACCO SERIOUSLY DAMAGES HEALTH" was printed on the front of all tobacco packs. An additional warning was also printed on the reverse of cigarette packs.

In 2003, new E.U. regulations required one of the following general warnings must be displayed, covering at least 30% of the surface of the pack:

Additionally, one of the following additional warnings must be displayed, covering at least 40% of the surface of the pack:

From October 2008, all cigarette products manufactured must carry picture warnings to the reverse. Every pack must have one of these warnings by October 2009.

Hong Kong

Warning on HKSAR cigarette packages

Under Hong Kong Law, Chap 371B Smoking (Public Health) (Notices) Order, packaging must indicate the amount of nicotine and tar that is present in cigarette boxes in addition to graphics depicting different health problems caused by smoking in the size and ratio as prescribed by law. The warnings are to be published in both official languages, Traditional Chinese and English.

Warning begins with the phrase '香港特區政府忠告市民 HONG KONG SAR GOVERNMENT WARNING' and then one of the following in all caps.

In addition, any print advertisement must give minimum 20% coverage of the following warnings: HKSAR GOVERNMENT HEALTH WARNING


All cigarette packets and other tobacco packaging in Iceland must include warnings in the same size and format as in the European Union and using the same approved texts in Icelandic.

Reykingar drepa
(Smoking kills)


Front of a Classic Mild pack, sold in India, displaying the new pictorial warning

Cigarette packets sold in India are required to carry graphical and textual health warnings. The warning must cover at least 85% of the surface of the pack, of which 60% must be pictorial and the remaining 25% contains textual warnings in English, Hindi or any other Indian language.

Until 2008,[21] cigarette packets sold in India were required to carry a written warning on the front of the packet with the text CIGARETTE SMOKING IS INJURIOUS TO HEALTH in English. Paan, gutkha and tobacco packets carried the warning TOBACCO IS INJURIOUS TO HEALTH in Hindi and English. The law later changed. According to the new law, cigarette packets were required to carry pictorial warnings of a skull or scorpion along with the text SMOKING KILLS and TOBACCO CAUSES MOUTH CANCER in both Hindi and English.

The Cigarette and Other Tobacco Products (Packaging and Labelling) Rules 2008 requiring graphic health warnings came into force on 31 May 2008. Under the law, all tobacco products were required to display graphic pictures, such as pictures of diseased lungs, and the text SMOKING KILLS or TOBACCO KILLS in English, covering at least 40% of the front of the pack, and retailers must display the cigarette packs in such a way that the pictures on pack are clearly visible. In January 2012 controversy arose when it was discovered an image of English footballer John Terry was used on a warning label.[22]

On 15 October 2014, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan announced that only 15% of the surface of a pack of cigarettes could contain branding, and that the rest must be used for graphic and text health warnings.[23] The Union Ministry of Health amended the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Packaging and Labelling) Rules, 2008 to enforce the changes effective from 1 April 2015.[21][24][25]

However, the government decision to increase pictorial warnings on tobacco packets from April 1, was put on hold indefinitely, following the recommendations of a Parliamentary committee, which reportedly did not speak to health experts, but only spoke to tobacco lobby representatives.[26] On April 5, 2016, the health ministry ordered government agencies to enforce this new rule.[27]

Following the intervention by the Parliamentary committee, NGO Health of Millions represented by Prashant Bhushan filed a petition in Supreme Court of India, which asks the government to stop selling of loose cigarettes and publish bigger health warnings on tobacco packs.[28]


General warning:

Current warning message in Indonesia (only for advertisement), where uses "18+" sign. This picture is adapted from Thailand origin and used in many countries such as Indonesia.[29]

Before 1999

(Government warning: smoking can harm health)

From 1999 to 2001

(Government warning: smoking can cause cancer, heart attacks, impotence and disorders of pregnancy and the fetus)

From 2002 to 2013

(Smoking can cause cancer, heart attacks, impotence and disorders of pregnancy and the fetus)

Since 2014

With the enforcement of 2012 Indonesian Government Regulation (Peraturan Pemerintah) No. 109, the tobacco packaging and advertising must include warning images and age restriction (18+). Graphic warning messages must consist 40% of cigarette packages. After the introduction of graphic images in Indonesian cigarette packaging, the branding of cigarettes as "light", "mild", etc. is forbidden.

(Warning: smoking kills you)


(Warning: smoking causes mouth cancer)
(Warning: smoking causes throat cancer)
(Warning: smoking near children is dangerous to them)
(Warning: smoking causes lung cancer and chronic bronchitis)

This warning below is appear on the side of the cigarette packaging:

(Do not sell or give [this product] to the children under 18 years old and pregnant mothers)


Japan is the first country in Asia to enforce general warning on cigarette packaging, in force since 1972.

Prior to 2005, there was only one warning on all Japanese cigarette packages.

Since 2005, more than one general warning is printed on cigarette packaging.

On the front of cigarette packages:

On the back of cigarette packages:


In Malaysia, general warning as a mandatory on all Malaysian cigarette packaging are in force since June 1976.[30]

Starting 1 June 2009, The Malaysian government has decided to place graphic images on the cigarette packs to show the adverse long-term effects of excessive smoking replacing the general warning with text describing the graphic images printed in Malay (front) and English (back) explaining:

Graphic warning messages must consist 40% of the front of cigarette packages and 60% in the back. After the introduction of graphic images in Malaysian cigarette packaging, the branding of cigarettes as "light", "mild", etc. is forbidden.


In Mexico cigarette packs contain health warnings and graphic images since 2010. By law, 30% of the pack's front, 100% of the pack's rear, and 100% of one lateral must consist on images and warnings. The Secretariat of Health issues new warnings and images every six months. Images have included a dead rat, a partial mastectomy, a laryngectomy, a dead human fetus surrounded by cigarette butts, a woman being fed after suffering a stroke, and damaged lungs amongst others.

Warnings include smoking-related diseases and statistics, toxins found in cigarettes and others such as:


General warning (on the front of cigarette packages, covering at least 30% of the area, Helvetica font):

Additional warnings (on the back of cigarette packages, covering at least 40% of the area, Helvetica font):

Regulated by “LEGE cu privire la tutun şi la articolele din tutun“ (Law on tobacco and tobacco articles) nr. 278-XVI from 14.12.2007[31] enabled at 07.03.2008

Cigarette packets in Transnistria have variable warning labels, depending from where they come from (English, Russian, etc.)

New Zealand

The front of a 20 pack of Marlboro red cigarettes sold in New Zealand.

The first health warnings appeared on cigarette packets in New Zealand in 1974. Warning images accompanying text have been required to appear on each packet since 28 February 2008.

By law, 30% of the pack's front and 90% of the pack's rear must consist of graphic warning messages. Images include gangrenous toes (pictured), rotting teeth and gums, diseased lungs and smoking-damaged hearts. Cigarette packets also carry the Quitline logo and phone number and other information about quitting smoking.[32]

In total, there are 14 different warnings. A full list with pictures is available at the New Zealand Ministry of Health's website. Warning messages are rotated annually with 7 being printed in equal quantities one year, and the other 7 messages the next. Following is a list of the warnings in English, however each message also shows a small Māori language translation.


A warning in Norwegian (bokmål)

Norway have had general warnings on cigarette packets since 1975. Norway's warnings of today were introduced in 2003 and are in line with EU's legislation, as Norway is an EEA member:

On the front of cigarette and cigar packages, covering about 30% of the area:

On the back of cigarette and cigar packages, covering about 45% of the area:

Tobacco products like snus and chewing tobacco have the following warning printed on them:


All cigarettes are required by a Statutory Order 1219(I)/2008 dated 25 September 2008, published in the Gazette of Pakistan dated 24 November 2008, to carry rotational health warnings from 1 July 2009. Under the previous law, health warnings were not required to be rotated.

Each health warning will be printed for a period of 6 months. The health warnings are to be in Urdu and in English. Here are the English versions:

1. WARNING: Protect children. Do not let them breathe your smoke. Ministry of Health.

2. WARNING: Smoking causes mouth and throat cancer. Ministry of Health.

3. WARNING: Quit smoking; live longer life. Ministry of Health.

4. WARNING: Smoking severely harms you and the people around you. Ministry of Health.

The warnings shall cover at least 30% on both sides of the packet, and located at the top portions of the face (in Urdu) and back (in English) of the packet.


Tobacco packaging warning messages on cigarette packs sold in the Philippines prior to March 2016
Graphic tobacco packaging warning messages at present

All cigarette packaging sold in Philippines are required to display a government warning label. The warnings include:

On July 2014, Philippine President Benigno Aquino III signed the Republic Act 10643, or “An Act to Effectively Instill Health Consciousness through Graphic Health Warnings on Tobacco Products.” This law requires tobacco product packaging to display pictures of the ill effects of smoking, occupying the bottom half of the display area in both front and the back side of the packaging.[33] On March 3, 2016, Department of Health (DOH) secretary Janette Garin started the implementation of Republic Act 10643, requiring tobacco manufacturers to include graphic health warnings on newer cigarette packaging.[34]

With the Graphic Health Warning Act implemented, graphic health warnings will be used on newer cigarette packaging, and older packages using text-only warnings are required to be replaced by newer packaging incorporating graphic warnings.[35] The 12 new warnings, showing photos of negative effects of smoking, are to be rotated every month, and by November 3, 2016, all cigarette packaging without graphic health warning messages will be banned from sale.[35] Labeling of cigarettes with "light" or "mild" are also started to be forbidden.[36]

Russian Federation

Warning messages on Russian cigarette packets
Type of warning Message English translation
Main Минздравсоцразвития России предупреждает: курение вредит Вашему здоровью The Russian Ministry of Public Health and Social Development warns: smoking is harmful to your health.
Additional Курение – причина раковых заболеваний Smoking causes cancer
Курение – причина смертельных заболеваний Smoking causes fatal diseases
Оградите детей от табачного дыма Keep children away from tobacco smoke
Курение табака вызывает никотиновую зависимость Smoking tobacco causes nicotine addiction
Курение – причина заболеваний сердца Smoking causes heart diseases

Warning messages on Russian cigarette packets revised in 2013, falling in line with European Union standards.

Changes to Tobacco packaging warning messages in Russia
Obverse Reverse Example design
Text warnings will cover 30% of surface Pictorial warnings will cover 50% of surface
Курение убивает
(Smoking kills)

Note: 12 different variants.[37]


Pack with Serbian warning

The warning messages on Serbian cigarette packets are visually similar to those in European Union countries, but the texts used in Serbia are not translated directly from EU-approved texts.

Warning messages on Serbian cigarette packets
Message English translation Example design
Пушење убија. Дувански дим штети људима у Вашој околини. Smoking kills. Tobacco smoke harms people around you.
Пушење убија. Дувански дим штети људима у Вашој околини.
Желите бебу? Пушење неповољно утиче на плодност код мушкараца и жена. Want a baby? Smoking reduces fertility in men and women.
Пушење изазива зависност! Потражите стручну помоћ за одвикавање. Smoking causes addiction! Seek professional help to quit the habit.


Cigarette pack of L&M Blue in Singapore, a photo of heart surgery and a warning message were printed.

Text warnings were first added on cigarette packets. They used blunt, straight-to-the-point messages such as 'Smoking causes lung cancer'. They were later replaced by graphic warnings in August 2004. They featured gory pictures and were printed with the messages:

In 2006, the images and warnings were revised, with images focusing on damaged organs. The following warnings shows what is printed nowadays.

From 1 January 2009, people possessing cigarettes without the SDPC (Singapore Duty Paid Cigarettes) label will be committing an offence under the Customs and GST Acts. The law was passed to distinguish non-duty paid, contraband cigarettes from duty-paid ones.


Switzerland has four official languages, but only has warning messages in three languages. The fourth language, Romansh, is only spoken by 0.5% of the population, and those persons typically also speak either German or Italian. The three warning messages below are posted on cigarette packets, cartons and advertisements such as outdoor billboard posters:


A small warning, in Somali and English, appears on British American Tobacco brands, Royals and Pall Mall.

South Korea

In South Korea, general warning on cigarette packaging are in force since 1976. The warning messages are:


The warnings in Taiwan are led by the phrase "行政院衛生署警告" (Warning from the Department of Health, Executive Yuan:), and followed by one of the following warnings:

Due to the Department of Health was reorganized into Ministry of Health and Welfare, the images and warnings were revised in 2014. The following warnings shows what is printed (the new warnings will use on June 1, 2014).[39]

Whether the warning is the old version or the new version, it will be marked with "戒煙專線0800-636363" (Smoking Quitting Hotline: 0800-636363).


In Thailand, a variety of warnings with graphic, disturbing images of tobacco-related harms (including a tracheotomy and rotting teeth) are placed prominently on cigarette packages. A recent study showed that the warnings made Thai smokers think more often about the health risks of smoking and about quitting smoking.[40]


Old Turkish cigarette packaging with a general warning
Front of packaging (covers 65% of surface)
Sigara içmek öldürür
(Smoking kills)


Sigara içmek
size ve çevrenizdekilere ciddi zararlar verir
(Smoking seriously harms you and others around you)
Back of packaging (covers 40% of surface)


The warning messages on Ukrainian cigarette packets are also visually similar to those in European Union countries:

Warning messages on Ukrainian cigarette packets
Message English translation Example design
Курiння призводить до серцево-судинних захворювань та раку легенiв. Smoking causes heart diseases and lung cancer.
Warning on Lucky Strike pack from Ukraine
Курiння викликає залежнiсть, не починайте курити. Smoking is highly addictive, don't start.
Курiння викликає iмпотенцiю. Smoking causes impotence.
Захистiть дiтей: не дозволяйте їм дихати вашим димом. Protect your children, don't let them inhale your smoke.
Курiння пiд час вагiтностi шкодить вашiй дитинi. Smoking while pregnant harms your child.
Тютюновий дим шкодить здоров’ю тих, хто вас оточує. Cigarette smoke harms those around you.
Курцi помирають рано. Smokers die younger.

United States of America

Surgeon General's warning on a cigarette pack, 2012.

In 1966, the United States became the first nation in the world to require a health warning on cigarette packages.[41][42]

In 1973, the Assistant Director of Research at R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company wrote an internal memorandum regarding new brands of cigarettes for the youth market. He observed that, "psychologically, at eighteen, one is immortal" and theorized that "the desire to be daring is part of the motivation to start smoking." He stated, "in this sense the label on the package is a plus." [43]

In 1999, Philip Morris U.S.A. purchased three brands of cigarettes from Liggett Group Inc. The brands were: Chesterfield, L&M, and Lark.[44] At the time Philip Morris purchased the brands from Liggett, the packaging for those cigarettes included the statement "Smoking is Addictive". After Philip Morris acquired the three Liggett brands, it removed the statement from the packages.[45]

Though the United States started the trend of labeling cigarette packages with warnings, today the country has one of the least restrictive labelling requirements on their packages.[46] Warnings are usually in small typeface placed along one of the sides of the cigarette packs with colors and fonts that closely resemble the rest of the package, so the warnings essentially are integrated and do not stand out with the rest of the cigarette package.[46]

However, this is subject to change as the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009 requires color graphics with supplemental text that depicts the negative consequences of smoking to cover 50 percent of the front and rear of each pack. The nine new graphic warning labels were announced by the FDA in June 2011 and were required to appear on packaging by September 2012, though this was delayed by legal challenges.[47]

In August 2011, five tobacco companies filed a lawsuit against the FDA in an effort to reverse the new warning mandate. Tobacco companies claimed that being required to promote government anti-smoking campaigns by placing the new warnings on packaging violates the companies' free speech rights.[48] Additionally, R.J. Reynolds, Lorillard, Commonwealth Brands Inc., Liggett Group LLC and Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company Inc. claimed that the graphic labels are an unconstitutional way of forcing tobacco companies to engage in anti-smoking advocacy on the government's behalf.[49] A First Amendment lawyer, Floyd Abrams, represented the tobacco companies in the case, contending that requiring graphic warning labels on a lawful product cannot withstand constitutional scrutiny.[50] The Association of National Advertisers and the American Advertising Federation also filed a brief in the suit, arguing that the labels infringe on commercial free speech and could lead to further government intrusion if left unchallenged.[51]

On 29 February 2012, U.S. District Judge Richard Leon ruled that the labels violate the right to free speech in the First Amendment.[52] However, the following month the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit upheld the majority of the Tobacco Control Act of 2009, including the part requiring graphic warning labels. In April 2013 the Supreme Court declined to hear the appeal to this ruling, allowing the new labels to stand. As the original ruling against the FDA images was not actually reversed, the FDA will again need to go through the process of developing the new warning labels, and the timetable and final product remain unknown.[53][54][55][56]


Stronger warning labels started to appear in May 2010

Smokeless tobacco

A can of Copenhagen with the warning label.
The four warning label variants seen on various chewing tobacco products sold in the United States.

Effective June 2010, the following labels began to appear on smokeless tobacco products (also known as chewing tobacco) and their advertisements.

The new warnings are required to comprise 30 percent of two principal display panels on the packaging; on advertisements, the health warnings must constitute 20 percent of the total area.[57]


For many years in Venezuela, the only warning in cigarette packs was printed in a very small typeface along one of the sides:

"Se ha determinado que el fumar cigarrillos es nocivo para la salud, Ley de impuesto sobre cigarrillos" (It has been determined that cigarette smoking is harmful to your health, Cigarette Tax Law) Since 14 September 1978

On 24 March 2005, another warning was introduced in every cigarette pack: "Este producto contiene alquitrán, nicotina y monóxido de carbono, los cuales son cancerígenos y tóxicos. No existen niveles seguros para el consumo de estas sustancias" (This product contains tar, nicotine and carbon monoxide, which are carcinogenic and toxic. There are no safe levels for consumption of these substances".

1978's warning, was not removed, now every cigarette pack contains both warnings (one on each lateral).

In addition, since 24 March 2005, one of the following warnings is randomly printed very prominently, along with a graphical image, occupying the 100% of the back of the pack (40% for the text warning and 60% for the image):

Also, in Venezuela, tobacco advertising is strictly forbidden, so much so that the words tobacco, cigarette, cigar, etc. are not permitted in media such as radio and television and no one can smoke on television.

In the campaign called: "Venezuela 100% libre de humo" (Venezuela, 100% smoke-free), curiously, these warnings only appear on cigarette packs and not on other tobacco products (which only conserve the 1978 warning).


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