As of August 15th, The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is now requiring cigarette packages to depict realistic images showing possible consequences of using cigarettes.
What We Know:
- On their website, the FDA states that there will be “regulations restricting the sale and distribution of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco,” along with a video.
- Although there have been changes that the FDA has required, this one is the strictest rule to date concerning labels. Indira Talwani, a federal judge, was the one who proposed this rule.
- According to the World Health Organization, when comparing 28 other countries which require images for warnings, it was found that images are more effective to consumers than text-only warnings. The fear appeal is an effective type of persuasive marketing and has shown effectiveness dating back to the 1950s.
- It has been explained that “the FDA rule mandates that tobacco companies display color graphics on the upper half of the front and back of packets, and on 20% of the space on print advertisements. The images are meant to turn off potential smokers and encourage current smokers to quit.”
- Now, in addition to the standard warnings such as “tobacco smoke causes fatal lung disease in nonsmokers” and “smoking can cause heart disease and strokes by clogging arteries”, detailed photos will be added.
- Duff Wilson, with NPR, explained that “instead of that little ‘Surgeon General’ says box, the label will be half the pack and will be covered with a graphic warning label including images”.
With this new policy in place, prepare yourself to see fear appeal images and possibly graphic images on items used for smoking.