01 | 18 | 2011

FDA Unveils New Cigarette Warning Labels

The FDA unveiled 36 proposed labels to modify the required cigarette packaging and advertising warning labels to include new textual statements with color graphics depicting the negative health effects of smoking.

The new labels are part of the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (2009), which requires cigarette packaging and advertising to have larger and more graphic and visible health warnings.

The series of new warning labels will appear on the front and back panels of each cigarette package and must comprise a minimum of 50% of each panel. In cigarette advertisements, the ads must occupy a minimum of 20% of the ad space. View all of the proposed warning labels

The series of proposed labels will be focus group tested over the coming months and the nine most effective will be announced in June 2011. By October 22, 2012, cigarette manufacturers will be required to apply the nine new labels to all cigarette packaging.

FDA Commissioner Dr. Margaret Hamburg explained, “When the rule takes effect, the health consequences of smoking will be obvious every time someone picks up a pack of cigarettes.”

"In implementing the new warnings, the United States is catching up to scientific best practices," said Matthew Myers, President of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.

More information on the new labels