Australia's High Court Upholds Tough Cigarette Law

Aug 15, 2012

Legislation upheld by Australia's Highest Court  will force companies to strip logos from cigarette packs in that country.  Starting in December, tobacco companies will no longer be allowed to display their brand designs, logos, or colors on packs of cigarettes to be sold in Australia. Instead, packs will come in a plain shade of olive, complete with graphic health warnings and images of cancer-riddled mouths and sick children.

The Australian government wants to make cigarette smoking as unglamorous as possible. However, tobacco companies have argued that the value of their trademarks will be destroyed, and they fear that the black market for  counterfeit products  will grow..

British American Tobacco and Philip Morris International have expressed concern that Australia’s law will set a global precedent  and lead to similar packaging in other countries.  Australia’s high court withheld its reasons for the judgement at this time.  Those reasons are expected to be released later this year.