FDA releases graphic tobacco warning labels for 2012

Party Rooster

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U.S. releases graphic tobacco warning labels

By Deborah Zabarenko

WASHINGTON | Tue Jun 21, 2011 3:38pm EDT

(Reuters) - Dead bodies, diseased lungs and rotting teeth were among the among the graphic images for revamped tobacco labels, unveiled on Tuesday by health officials who hope the warnings will help smokers quit.

The new labels must be on cigarette packages and tobacco advertisements no later than September 2012, as part of a law that put the multibillion-dollar tobacco industry under the control of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

They represent the first change in U.S. cigarette warnings in 25 years.

"With these warnings, every person who picks up a pack of cigarettes is going to know exactly what risks they are taking," Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told reporters at the White House.

The new labels may disturb some, including one with a photograph of a man smoking a cigarette through a hole in his throat, and one showing a mouth with discolored teeth and an ulcerated lip.

Other images stress the dangers of second-hand smoke to children and show tobacco's causal link to lung disease, cancer, strokes, heart disease and death.

Sebelius said the goal was to stop children and teenagers from starting to smoke and to give nicotine-addicted adults an added incentive to quit, helping push down U.S. smoking levels that have been stubbornly stagnant in recent years.

"We want kids to understand that smoking is gross not cool and there is really nothing pretty about having mouth cancer or making your baby sick if you smoke," she said.

More than 221,000 Americas will be diagnosed with lung cancer in 2011, accounting for about 14 percent of all U.S. cancer cases, according to the American Cancer Society. Nearly 157,000 men and women are expected to die from lung cancer this year in the United States.

The World Health Organization has repeatedly called for graphic images of diseased organs and heavily stained teeth on tobacco packs as a turn-off. But in Europe and elsewhere, young smokers often buy decorative holders to hide the warning labels on their cigarette packs.

'SERIOUS HEALTH RISKS'

The 2009 Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act called for cigarette packages to include warning statements in large type covering half of the front and back of each package and graphic images showing the health dangers of smoking.

The warnings are also to occupy the top 20 percent of every tobacco advertisement of companies such as Altria Group Inc's Philip Morris USA unit, Reynolds American Inc's R.J. Reynolds Tobacco unit and Lorillard Inc's Lorillard Tobacco Co.

The anti-smoking group Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids said the images were a dramatic change from today's printed warnings that simply list potential health problems from smoking.

"The current warnings are more than 25 years old, go unnoticed on the side of cigarette packs and fail to effectively communicate the serious health risks of smoking," the group said.

Tobacco companies take advertising curbs and health warning rules seriously as possible restrictions on their ability to do business. R.J. Reynolds, for instance, has challenged the legality of mandated larger and graphic warnings in a federal lawsuit.

Elsewhere, Philip Morris International has sued Uruguay over the South American country's anti-smoking rules, which include large health warnings on cigarette packs and a ban on tobacco products branded "light.

The company said that arbitration was meant to challenge "extreme and ineffective measures that have created an environment conducive to the black market in cigarettes."

Sebelius, estimating that tobacco costs the U.S. economy $200 billion a year in medical costs and lost productivity.

Tobacco will kill nearly 6 million people worldwide this year, including 600,000 non-smokers, the WHO said last month, estimating the global annual death toll could reach 8 million by 2030.

The Dow Jones tobacco index, whose components include Altria, Lorillard and Reynolds American, was down 1 percent on Tuesday afternoon after the images were unveiled.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011...=Feed:+reuters/topNews+(News+/+US+/+Top+News)

Gallery:
http://www.fda.gov/TobaccoProducts/Labeling/CigaretteWarningLabels/default.htm
 

Ballbuster1

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More stupid shit. People already know the dangers of smoking and if they don't
then getting them off the face of the earth won't hurt.
 

domelogic

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Feb 16, 2005
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#4
More stupid shit. People already know the dangers of smoking and if they don't
then getting them off the face of the earth won't hurt.
This. I mean all the lawsuits brought about over the last 40 years didnt let people know so now they have to show pics, yeah that will do it. You want to smoke yourself to death have at it just dont blame anyone for your own stupidity
 

Party Rooster

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I'm confused. If the government really wanted to reduce the population, why would they keep up this war on tobacco companies?
 

whiskeyguy

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"With these warnings, every person who picks up a pack of cigarettes is going to know exactly what risks they are taking," Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told reporters at the White House.
How long until someone gets sued for having the "graphic images" on the packs visible in public? I'm sure gas stations will no longer be able to display them. I wish the government would just get the fuck out of everyone's business.
 

Ballbuster1

In The Danger Zone...
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Aug 26, 2002
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I was thinking maybe I could sue for upsetting me with these disturbing
images since I don't smoke. Why do I have to see this shit?
 

Rash Rendering

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Feb 9, 2010
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I see a new niche market for cigarette pack skins. Like apple/mac style colorful cig pack holders to obscure the horrible graphics. I'd invent them myself and make millions but I'm too goddamn lazy. I'd call them SmokeSkinz (TM). Nobody steal that.
 

afternoonquil

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Apr 2, 2011
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#12
I just came up with this awesome idea for holding your cigarette packs, i'm gonna call them SmokeSkinsssss Ⓡ
 

Ego

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Feb 15, 2005
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#14
Fuck those pictures. There's no shock/scare value in them. They're all ineffective guilt trips that were whitewashed for public consumption. I want to see someone else like Roger Ebert, an alien-looking newborn, and a real smoking related death corpse.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
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took that photo about 3 or 4 years ago, the back of the pack was in some kind of gibberish from the pacific rim maybe Thailand
 
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THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
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#18
didn't he steal that from bill hicks?
 

Don the Radio Guy

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So when will the news come out that the new images will be funded by a tax increase?
 

mills

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Jan 30, 2005
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#20
Is Kirk Strong the DonTheTrucker of aspartame threadjackings? Or is DonTheTrucker the Kirk Strong of Obama threadjackings. This forum can be so confusing!
 

whiskeyguy

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Is Kirk Strong the DonTheTrucker of aspartame threadjackings? Or is DonTheTrucker the Kirk Strong of Obama threadjackings. This forum can be so confusing!
Don's right here. The government rarely does anything unless it leads to either more revenue, more power, or both. They already take around $1/pack in taxes... you don't think they're looking for ways to increase that? Vices are one of the areas where people don't really complain when taxes are raised.
 

Party Rooster

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#22
Don's right here. The government rarely does anything unless it leads to either more revenue, more power, or both. They already take around $1/pack in taxes... you don't think they're looking for ways to increase that? Vices are one of the areas where people don't really complain when taxes are raised.
Or maybe it's actually gotten one right after all these years. Smoking rates have dropped dramatically the last 40 years. And don't forget the tobacco industry criminally (forget all the civil stuff) mislead the public about their product. Fuck them.

And I'm guessing the cost of including these labels on one side of a cigarette pack are pretty negligible, and are paid for by the manufacturers, not the taxpayers.

We've come a long way baby...;)

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That being said, I think we're pretty close to hitting critical mass on getting more people to quit smoking. The ones that are left do it knowing the risks and are free to do so, it's a legal product.
 

Mobo

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Aug 10, 2005
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#23
Weed is safer, but they won"t let me smoke that either.

(pssst....I do anyways...don't tell Obama.)
 

whiskeyguy

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Or maybe it's actually gotten one right after all these years. Smoking rates have dropped dramatically the last 40 years. And don't forget the tobacco industry criminally (forget all the civil stuff) mislead the public about their product. Fuck them.

And I'm guessing the cost of including these labels on one side of a cigarette pack are pretty negligible, and are paid for by the manufacturers, not the taxpayers.
First, is it the government's business to "get" people to quit smoking? I understand the health costs associated with smokers (which is why we need a "less humane" health care system, as fucked as that sounds), but even that I doubt. Is someone who smokes and dies an expensive quick death at 50 more of a burden than someone who is healthy and slowly dies for 25 more years? I kinda doubt that.

Second, yest the tobacco company has misled the public. They've paid for doing so. Everyone today knows smoking is bad for you. Get over it.

Third, the costs of adding those labels are not paid by the manufacturer, their paid by the consumer, and against the will of both the consumer and manufacturers. Now I realize this happens often, seat belts and airbags being an example, but this isn't actually a safety device. It's a deterrent which may not even work.

Here's what's probably going to happen. This law is going to pass, and people will find the packs offensive. Stores are then going to be requires to not have cigarettes on display (a pretty large hurdle) due to the offensive packs (kinda defeating the purpose). In order to verify that stores are meeting the requirements, ATF is going to be tasked with inspecting store displays and fining those that aren't complying. Due to the increase in scope of the agency, they will require an increase in budget. Another $1 will be tacked onto every cigarette pack.