What is standard packaging?


Standard packaging, also known as generic, plain or homogenous packaging, refers to packaging that has had the attractive promotional aspects of tobacco products removed and the appearance of all tobacco packs is standardised including the colour of the pack.

The Australian regulations require:
• No branding other than the product name in a standard font, size and colour
• Prohibition of all other trademarks, logos, colour schemes and graphics

Only the following markings are permitted:
• Standard shape, size and colour for the pack and contents
• Large graphic health warnings front and back
• Qualitative rather than quantitative information on constituents and emissions
• Tax stamps
• Quitline number and web address on all packs
• All packs to be a standard drab dark green/brown colour in matt finish.
(For more information, go to


Relevant Links:

EU Questions and answers: Towards a new EU law on Tobacco Products (Dec 2012)

Event on Plain Packaging at the European Parliament Feb 2012 (including presentations)




Older Resources:

"How does increasingly plainer cigarette packaging influence adult smokers' perceptions about brand image? An experimental study" (Tobacco Control, 2008)

IDRC and Plain Packaging (Canada)

Article:  Plain packets' law to strip cigarettes of their glamour (The Observer, Sept 2008, UK)

"The Case for Plain Packaging" (Tobacco Control, 2005)

Globalink's "Towards Informed Consent: The Case for Plain Packaging of Tobacco Products" (UICC, 1996)


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