Farmer's Voice

Senate in France Passes Plain Packaging Bill

Despite opposition from Conservatives and tobacconists, the French parliament on December 17th passed a bill to require cigarettes to be sold in plain packaging, devoid of logos, with the brand name to appear in a small, uniform typeface, starting May 20, 2016. The Senate, which had initially demanded that the standardized packaging clause be removed from the draft legislation, passed the measure after an amendment allowed the brand name to be printed in small typeface. The World Health Organization estimates that about one quarter of adults and one-third of teens in the country are smokers (Agence France Presse 12/17).

On the French parliament's passage of legislation for PP starting May 2016, Morgan Stanley said the pricing and tax structure in France should mitigate risk to pricing and profitability, adding that in contrast to Australia, the industry has stronger grounds for pending legal challenges in the UK and EU given the European Court of Justice's 2002 ruling that affirmed manufacturers' ability to maintain sufficient space for branding on their packs. The industry's ongoing challenge of the revised EU Tobacco Products Directive is also predicated on the argument that selective implementation of PP would constrain the free mov