Last month, the Canadian government approved sweeping changes to its laws on tobacco products and tobacco alternatives, part of which will be the implementation of plain packaging. Now, the Canadian Ministry of Health is asking for public comment on the matter.
The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, minister of health, has opened a public comment period that runs through Sept. 6, and is inviting Canadians to submit their thoughts on the plain packaging guidelines via an online form. Specifically, the minister is seeking comments from the general public, health professionals and associations, provinces and territories, industry, academics and experts, as well as other interested parties.
For reference, plain packaging means that tobacco products must be offered without any distinctive or attractive features, that are similar in appearance and packaged in the same ordinary—and unappealing—color.
Plain packaging is expected to go into effect in 2019; after the comment period closes, the government will finalize regulations and then advise manufacturers of the specific details, with a period given for them to exhaust existing packaging.
Image courtesy of Heart & Stroke Foundation.