Poll: Graphic new warning labels for cigarettes

Graphic new health warnings will soon be placed on tobacco products / Courtesy: FDA

Among the images released Tuesday are rotting and diseased teeth and gums and a man with a tracheotomy smoking ...

In the most significant change to U.S. cigarette packs in 25 years, the Food and Drug Administration released nine new warning labels that depict in graphic detail the negative health effects of tobacco use.

The labels will take up the top half of a pack of cigarette packs. Warning labels also must appear in advertisements and constitute 20 percent of an ad. Cigarette makers have until the fall of 2012 to comply.

Mandates to introduce new graphic warning labels were part of a law passed in 2009 that, for the first time, gave the federal government authority to regulate tobacco, including setting guidelines for marketing and labeling, banning certain products and limiting nicotine.

Starting in September 2012, the new cigarette health warnings will appear:

  • on the top 50 percent of both the front and rear panels of each cigarette package.
  • in the upper portion of each cigarette advertisement, occupying at least 20 percent of the area of the advertisement.

Key dates to implement health warnings:

  • November 12, 2010 " FDA released 36 proposed color graphic images and a proposed rule for public comment
  • June 21, 2011 " FDA announced its selection of nine new cigarette health warnings
  • June 22, 2011 " FDA TMs final rule, Required Warnings for Cigarette Packages and Advertisements, publishes in the Federal Register
  • September 22, 2012 " Cigarettes for sale or distribution in the United States can no longer be manufactured or advertised without the new cigarette health warnings
  • October 22, 2012 " Cigarette manufacturers can no longer distribute cigarettes for sale in the United States unless they display the new cigarette health warnings
To get more information on the proposed changes CLICK HERE .

Do you think the new health warnings go too far? Tell us "Your Point of View" by voting in the poll below and leaving your comments on the issue.