Last updated at 14:28 GMT, Tuesday, 08 January 2013

Australian cigarette packaging

Summary

7 January 2013

Some Australian companies are giving away cardboard covers which hide photos of cancer-sufferers on plain cigarette packets.

The authorities are investigating whether this breaks the new law on cigarette packaging.

Reporter:
Phil Mercer

Cigarette packet sin a shop in Australia

Cigarette packaging has strong images of smoking-related diseases

Listen

Click to hear the report

Report

Tobacco companies and retailers that try to circumvent Australia's plain-packaging laws could face prosecution, according to health authorities.

They're investigating whether to take action against cardboard covers and stickers that hide graphic anti-smoking warnings.

One firm that produces labels says that sales have soared because consumers can't stand the sight of the packets they buy.

Just over a month ago, Australia banned all tobacco company logos and colours from packaging, which now has disturbing colour pictures of smokers suffering from tongue and lung cancer.

The president of the Australian Medical Association, Steve Hambleton, is confident that those who attempt to skirt the legislation will be shut down.

President of the Australian Medical Association, Steve Hambleton:
If you're trying to circumvent it, it's not right, and I know that the government will actually either fix the problem by changing the law or enforcing the law. But the second thing I thought was, this is obviously working. If companies are going out of their way to hide the warnings and to hide the labels, they know it's having an impact and that's reassuring for us.

Tobacco companies had argued that Australia's plain packaging measures would deprive them of copyright without proper compensation. But in August their case was dismissed by the High Courts.

Listen

Click here to hear the vocabulary

Vocabulary

to circumvent

to find a way to avoid obeying a rule or law

plain-packaging laws

laws which state that cigarettes cannot be sold in branded and attractive boxes

face prosecution

have legal charges brought against them

graphic

explicit, showing unpleasant images

soared

risen very quickly

can't stand the sight of

hate to look at

disturbing

unpleasant

to skirt

to avoid

going out of their way to (do something)

doing things they wouldn't normally do

compensation

money received to make up for a financial loss caused by someone else

  1. Home
  2. Grammar, Vocabulary & Pronunciation
  3. Words in the News
  4. Australian cigarette packaging